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Cablegate: Civil Liberties Advocate to Challenge Eu Data Retention Law

VZCZCXRO3694
RR RUEHAG RUEHAST RUEHDA RUEHFL RUEHIK RUEHKW RUEHLA RUEHLN RUEHLZ
RUEHPOD RUEHROV RUEHSR RUEHVK RUEHYG
DE RUEHDF #0037 3511500
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 171500Z DEC 07
FM AMCONSUL DUSSELDORF
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 0103
INFO RUEHZL/EUROPEAN POLITICAL COLLECTIVE
RUCNFRG/FRG COLLECTIVE
RHMFIUU/DEPT OF JUSTICE WASHINGTON DC
RUEFHLC/DEPT OF HOMELAND SECURITY WASHINGTON DC
RUEHDF/AMCONSUL DUSSELDORF 0117

UNCLAS DUSSELDORF 000037

SIPDIS

SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PGOV KISL PTER KPAO GM
SUBJECT: CIVIL LIBERTIES ADVOCATE TO CHALLENGE EU DATA RETENTION LAW


Sensitive but Unclassified -- Not for Internet Distribution

1. (SBU) Former Federal Interior Minister Gerhart Baum (FDP)
told Pol/Econ Off that he plans to challenge the German law that
implements the EU data retention directive this coming January.
The law itself extends the amount of time personal data can be
kept and was approved on November 10, 2007, by the German
Federal Parliament by amending existing legislation. Baum said
that he plans to lodge a constitutional complainant against the
new law in the Federal Constitutional Court in Karlsruhe shortly
after it goes into effect on January 1, 2008.

2. (SBU) This case will be the fourth civil liberties-related
case Baum has brought before the Constitutional Court. The
first case resulted in a 2005 decision that allowed electronic
surveillance in one's private home, but only under strict
guidelines that one senior official at the Office of the
Protection of the Constitution (OPC) described to us as, "too
strict to be effective." The second case resulted in a decision
in 2006 that overturned the "2003 Air Security Act" which would
have permitted the German airforce to shoot down hijacked
planes. Most recently, Baum has argued before the Court that an
amendment of the OPC law in North-Rhine Westphalia (NRW)
allowing online searches is unconstitutional. A decision on
this case is expected in February 2008.

3. (U) Baum currently works as a lawyer in private practice in
Cologne. He was Federal Interior Minister of Germany from
1978-1982. At the time, he was the youngest Federal MOI to hold
the position. While still a member of the FDP, he is no longer
active in politics.

4. (U) This message was coordinated with Embassy Berlin.

KRAFT

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