Secrecy News

Judge Walton Named to Foreign Intel Surveillance Court

Judge Reggie B. Walton was appointed to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court by the Chief Justice of the United States effective May 19, Secrecy News has learned.

The FIS Court, established by the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act of 1978, is composed of eleven District Court judges who are responsible for authorizing government requests for electronic surveillance and physical search of suspected foreign agents or terrorists within the United States.

Judge Walton has been a U.S. District Judge for the District of Columbia since 2001, having been appointed by President George W. Bush.

He replaces Judge Claude M. Hilton of the Eastern District of Virginia, whose term on the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court expired on May 18.

His appointment to the Court was confirmed for Secrecy News by Mr. Sheldon Snook, media liaison and assistant to the chief district judge of the D.C. District Court.

An updated list of members of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court may be found here.

A biography of Judge Walton is here.

Judge Walton has gained prominence lately as the presiding judge in the trial of former Vice Presidential aide Lewis “Scooter” Libby.

Last year he ruled (pdf) in favor of the Federation of American Scientists in a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit against the National Reconnaissance Office.

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