A legal advocacy group led by conservative radio host Mark Levin, the Landmark Legal Foundation, has filed a request with the U.S. Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court requesting a "full investigation" of multiple leaks on surveillance activity conducted at the behest of the court.
Many former associates of President Trump were then identified in news reports, likely as a result of those requests. Landmark argues that this is an illegal abuse of the FISA process.
The amicus curiae filed Thursday cites a "flurry of recent published reports" that disclose classified information, citing multiple anonymous sources. "The nature, timing and volume of classified information released indicated a systematic effort to exploit the orders of this Court for political purposes," the filing reads.
The filing refers to a number of articles from the Washington Post, New York Times, the BBC and others which contain information related to the FISA Court, which was established under the 1978 Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act and oversees requests for surveillance warrants against foreign intelligence operations.
The articles cited concern former Trump associates: former campaign manager Paul Manafort, Trump confidant Roger Stone and former campaign adviser Carter Page — all of whom are U.S. citizens who were "subject to a FISA warrant."
Page, for example, was hit with allegations he either worked as an agent of a foreign government or colluded with one amid reporting claiming the FBI had successfully obtained a secret court order for a FISA warrant to monitor communications in 2016. Manafort is being probed as part of congressional and FBI investigations into the Trump camp's ties to Russia.
The filing also refers to former national security adviser Mike Flynn, who got caught up in the surveillance of the Russian ambassador and whose identity was "unmasked" and "unlawfully" leaked to the media. Flynn resigned earlier this year after it was revealed he lied to the White House about his communications with the Russian ambassador.
"Each leak is potentially criminal and certainly unethical," the filing reads. "They also undermine the public's faith in the credibility of the FISA process."
"Landmark respectfully suggests that the Court, sitting en banc, should direct the government to complete its investigation and report its findings to the Court within 90 days," Levin read on his radio program Thursday.
"The Court should also consider whether it is appropriate to issue an order to all relevant federal law enforcement and intelligence agencies to show cause as to why they should not be held in contempt for failing to protect the secrecy of classified information obtained pursuant to orders of this Court."
He added: "Landmark respectfully encourages this Court to use the full arsenal of legal powers available to it to resolve this matter."