NYC Mayoral Candidate to Muslims: I'll End Broad Police Spying

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Wednesday, 16 Oct 2013 11:11 PM

By Todd Beamon

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The New York City Police Department's broad surveillance methods will end if Bill de Blasio is elected mayor, the Democratic candidate told Muslim supporters on Wednesday.

"The efforts of surveillance have to be based on specifically specific information, and obviously you need to go through a careful vetting process," de Blasio said at a rally in Brooklyn, WCBS-AM  reports.

De Blasio, who is heading into the Nov. 5 general election ahead of Republican Joe Lhota in the polls, said follow-up surveillance tactics would be based only on specific leads.

The department, under him, also would be overseen by a new inspector general, de Blasio said.

"Not only are we going to be safe, but we're going to be safe in a manner that is, again, consistent with our values and our constitution," the candidate said.

According to news reports, NYPD officials acknowledged in court testimony that no leads or terrorism investigations developed from surveillance of Muslim neighborhoods by a secret Demographics Unit.

The unit also followed daily life within the Muslim community, clocking where people ate, prayed and obtained other services, including haircuts.

NYPD officers in the unit also infiltrated dozens of mosques and Muslim student groups,  the reports said.


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