NEW YORK: Riptide Communications is hoping to build awareness for its client, the Center for Constitutional Rights (CCR), via media outreach efforts around a lawsuit filed last week by the organization.
The group last week filed a suit against the National Security Agency, claiming the agency's administration-approved practice of spying on American citizens is unconstitutional. The ACLU filed a similar suit.
CCR represents several detainees held by the US in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, as well as South Asian and Muslim men in the US who have been held or deported. Consequently, said David Lerner, Riptide's president, CCR leaders fear their staff and attorney calls are being monitored.
"CCR fits the profile of those who might be under surveillance without a warrant because their lawyers are in touch with people whose families are abroad," Lerner said.
Lerner said Riptide last week helped get CCR into a story in The New York Times. NBC did a story, as well.
"We went to [Pacifica's] Democracy Now! for the morning shows, and we talked with CNN and various other morning programs," he noted.
The government has 60 days to respond to the suit.
"It's a slow process," explained Lerner, "but there will be moments in the course of the lawsuit providing another [news] hook."
He added that Riptide is talking to legal reporters, beat reporters, weeklies, and channels like Court TV, as well as the international press.