Resource: Fazaga v. FBI

By: ACLU of Southern California

February 21, 2011

Fazaga v. FBI is a case against the Federal Bureau of Investigation for illegally spying on the Muslim community in Orange County, California.

In June 2006, FBI agents sent an informant to one of the largest, most diverse mosques in Orange County, California, who posed as a convert to Islam. After publicly converting before a crowd of hundreds, the informant spent the next fourteen months acting on the instructions of his FBI handlers — gathering names, telephone numbers, e-mails, backgrounds, political and religious views, travel plans, and other information on hundreds of individuals in the community. The FBI directed the informant, Craig Monteilh, not to target any particular individuals they believed were involved in criminal activity, but to gather as much information as possible on members of the Muslim community, and to focus on people who were more devout in their religious practice. No terrorism charges were brought, and no criminal convictions obtained, as a result of the FBI’s operation.