N.J. moves to keep tabs on surveillance operations in the state

A New Jersey Assembly committee has advanced a measure requiring police from other states to provide notice before conducting surveillance operations in the Garden State.

The bill’s primary sponsor Assemblyman Charles Mainor, who is also a police detective in Jersey City, says the legislation was prompted by the New York Police Department’s secret surveillance of Muslim businesses, mosques and student groups in North Jersey.

“Now we all understand that there have been things that have taken place in the past, but you can’t focus one group who is completely innocent,” said Mainor, D-Hudson. “It came into my backyard into Jersey City, and it was uncalled for, and this is what we have to do to stop that.”

Mainor says without proper notification, New Jersey authorities could get into unnecessary confrontations with undercover out-of-state officers.

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The bill requires a county prosecutor to be informed about the surveillance. Federal agencies would be exempt from the requirement.

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