TIME National Security

Court Rules Against NSA’s Bulk Collection of Phone Records

This undated photo provided by the National Security Agency (NSA) shows its headquarters in Fort Meade, Md.
NSA/Getty Images This undated photo provided by the National Security Agency (NSA) shows its headquarters in Fort Meade, Md.

The Patriot Act "cannot bear the weight the government asks us to assign to it," the court said

The National Security Agency’s mass collection of phone call records without a search warrant is illegal, an appeals court ruled on Thursday.

The Second Circuit Court of Appeals said the practice, largely exposed to the public by the Edward Snowden leaks two years ago, is not authorized by Section 215 of the Patriot Act passed by Congress, as the government claims.

The decision returned the case, brought by civil rights groups, to a lower court judge. But it neither ordered the data collection to stop immediately nor passed judgement on the constitutionality of the data collection, saying that Congress could still try to pass a measure that does sanction the practice.

“We hold that the text of § 215 cannot bear the weight the government asks us to assign to it, and that it does not authorize the telephone metadata program,” the court wrote in its ruling.

The ruling comes as Congress considers whether to extend the Patriot Act by June, including with potential revisions to limit the government’s data collection. Anthony Romero, the executive director of the American Civil Liberties Union, which brought the case, said in a statement that Thursday’s ruling should guide that process.

“The current reform proposals from Congress look anemic in light of the serious issues raised by the Second Circuit,” Romero said. “Congress needs to up its reform game if it’s going to address the court’s concerns.”

In a statement to TIME, National Security Council spokesperson Ned Price said it was still evaluating the decision.

“Without commenting on the ruling today, the President has been clear that he believes we should end the Section 215 bulk telephony metadata program as it currently exists by creating an alternative mechanism to preserve the program’s essential capabilities without the government holding the bulk data,” Price said. “We continue to work closely with members of Congress from both parties to do just that, and we have been encouraged by good progress on bipartisan, bicameral legislation that would implement these important reforms.”

TIME Research

Some Premature Babies Can Survive After Only 22 Weeks, Study Says

premature baby
Getty Images

Roughly 5,000 babies are born at 22 or 23 weeks in the U.S. each year

A new study has found that some premature babies can survive outside the womb with medical treatment as early as 22 weeks into pregnancy.

The study, published on Wednesday in the New England Journal of Medicine, raises questions about treatment practices for premature babies while also adding a new layer to the abortion debate.

Hospitals vary in how they approach treatment for babies born before 24 weeks, widely viewed to be the minimum age of viability, the New York Times reports. But the study, which analyzed almost 5,000 babies born at between 22 and 27 weeks, found that a small number of babies born at 22 weeks could survive with treatment, some with long-term impairment. Those that were not treated died.

Each year, roughly 5,000 babies are born at 22 or 23 weeks in the US, according to the Times.

[NYT]

TIME North Korea

North Korean Official Threatens Nuke Strike If U.S. ‘Forced Their Hand’

Participants of the 5th Conference of the Training Officers of the Korean People's Army greet Kim Jon Un (not pictured), in a photo released on May 1, 2015.
KCNA/Xinhua Press/Corbis Participants of the 5th Conference of the Training Officers of the Korean People's Army greet Kim Jon Un (not pictured), in a photo released on May 1, 2015.

"We're a major power politically, ideologically and militarily," he said

A senior North Korean figure said his country has the capability to strike the mainland United States with nuclear weapons and would do so if the U.S. “forced their hand.”

In an rare interview with U.S. media, Park Yong Chol told CNN that his country’s investment in nuclear arms was worth the cost of Western sanctions. “This strategic decision was the right one,” he said.

Park, who is the deputy head of the country’s Institute for Research into National Reunification, a government-tied think tank, denied United Nations reports of brutal camps for political prisoners and said that reports from South Korean intelligence that dictator Kim Jong Un had personally ordered the execution of more than a dozen officials this year amounted to “malicious slander.”

He also said that his country plans to become a world economic powerhouse.

“We’re a major power politically, ideologically and militarily,” he said. “The last remaining objective is to make the DPRK a strong economic power.”

[CNN]

TIME NFL

They Said What? Read 6 Text Message Conversations in the Deflategate Report

during Super Bowl XLIX at University of Phoenix Stadium on February 1, 2015 in Glendale, Arizona.
Christian Petersen—Getty Images Tom Brady of the New England Patriots reacts against the Seattle Seahawks during Super Bowl XLIX at University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Ariz., on Feb. 1, 2015

NFL investigation finds the Patriots likely deflated footballs

A report released by the NFL on Wednesday found that the New England Patriots had likely deflated game balls for the AFC Championship Game against the Indianapolis Colts on Jan. 18. Investigators not only zeroed in on two employees suspected of purposefully deflating footballs below regulation levels—John Jastremski, a team equipment assistant, and locker room attendant Jim McNally—but that star quarterback Tom Brady was probably “at least generally aware.”

The 243-page report draws from an array of sources, including interviews and surveillance camera footage, but the text messages exchanged between Jastremski and McNally provide a colorful (and at times expletive-filled) lens into what has become known as Deflategate.

The investigators say it’s still not clear when the duo may have begun collaborating, but the report provides one message that dates from May 9, 2014, in the offseason before the team’s run to a Super Bowl victory last season, in which McNally appears to refer to himself as the “deflator”:

McNally: You working

Jastremski: Yup

McNally: Nice dude….jimmy needs some kicks….lets make a deal…..come on help the deflator

[No response]

McNally: Chill buddy im just fu-kin with you ….im not going to espn……..yet

McNally never commented on why he appeared to label himself the “deflator,” because investigators obtained the texts after they had interviewed him, and counsel for the Patriots refused an unconditional follow-up interview.

On Oct. 17, the day after a Thursday night game against the New York Jets, during which Brady had complained about the level the balls were inflated, McNally texted Jastremski. During the exchange, he appears to threaten to inflate the ball. (NFL rules dictate that balls are inflated to between 12.5 and 13.5 pounds per square inch):

McNally: Tom sucks…im going make that next ball a fu-kin balloon

Jastremski: Talked to him last night. He actually brought you up and said you must have a lot of stress trying to get them done…

Jastremski: I told him it was. He was right though…

Jastremski: I checked some of the balls this morn… The refs fu-ked us…a few of then were at almost 16

Jastremski: They didnt recheck then after they put air in them

McNally: Fu-k tom …16 is nothing…wait till next sunday

Jastremski: Omg! Spaz

The text conversation continued over the next few days. On Oct. 23, McNally joked about “deflating”:

Jastremski: Can’t wait to give you your needle this week :)

McNally: Fu-k tom….make sure the pump is attached to the needle…..fu-kin watermelons coming

Jastremski: So angry

McNally: The only thing deflating sun..is his passing rating

Both McNally and Jastremski told investigators that the “deflating” joke was not a threat that the game balls for the upcoming match against the Bears would not be deflated. According to the report, “They offered no reasonable alternate explanation for the statement that the ‘only thing deflating’ on Sunday would be Brady’s passing rating.”

In one exchange on Oct. 24, McNally appears to ask for shoes as payment for his services, apparently threatening to otherwise inflate the ball like a larger Rugby ball. McNally told investigators that “rugby sunday” was in fact a reference to over-inflated balls:

Jastremski: I have a big needle for u this week

McNally: Better be surrounded by cash and newkicks….or its a rugby sunday

McNally: Fu-k tom

Jastremski: Maybe u will have some nice size 11s in ur locker

McNally: Tom must really be working your balls hard this week

The next day, Jastremski asked McNally what shoe size he wanted.

Jastremski: Size 11?

Jastremski: 2 or 3X?

McNally: Tom must really be on you

McNally: 11 0r 11 half……2x unless its tight fitting

Jastremski: Nah. Hasn’t even mentioned it, figured u should get something since he gives u nothing

Fast forward to January 2015, and the Patriots are about to play the Baltimore Ravens in the playoffs. On Jan. 7, the pair appear to have discussed getting autographed items to McNally:

McNally: Remember to put a couple sweet pig skins ready for tom to sign

Jastremski: U got it kid…big autograph day for you

McNally: Nice throw some kicks in and make it real special

Jastremski: It ur lucky. 11?

McNally: 11 or 11 and half kid

After the game on Jan. 10, according to the report, McNally apparently received two footballs signed by Brady and also got his signature on a previously obtained game-worn jersey.

On Jan. 19, early in the morning after the fateful game, McNally spoke with Brady and then called McNally at 7:45 a.m. The call lasted 9 minutes and 12 seconds, according to the report. McNally told investigators that the conversation was related to his “curiosity” about “what the heck is going on.”

Read the full report here.

TIME Kenya

Kenya Rolls Back Threat to Close Massive Refugee Camp

An overview of the part of the eastern sector of the IFO-2 camp in the sprawling Dadaab refugee camp, north of the Kenyan capital Nairobi seen on April 28, 2015.
Tony Karumba—AFP/Getty Images An overview of the part of the eastern sector of the IFO-2 camp in the sprawling Dadaab refugee camp, north of the Kenyan capital Nairobi seen on April 28, 2015.

The shift came after a visit from U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry

Kenya’s President Uhuru Kenyatta said Wednesday that hundreds of thousands of Somali refugees in the Dadaab camp would not be forcefully repatriated, walking back a threat made last month after a deadly attack at a university by the militant group al-Shabaab.

In a statement issued by his office, according to the New York Times, citing news agencies, Kenyatta said his country “has been, and will continue, fulfilling its international obligations.” The new comments come after Kenyatta met with the United Nations’ top refugee official and U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry.

The government drew international condemnation after calling for the closure of the Dadaab refugee camp, one of the world’s largest and which houses some 350,000 Somalis, in the wake of the attack in Garissa that killed nearly 150 people, mostly students.

[New York Times]

TIME Soccer

Watch Lionel Messi Take Cristiano Ronaldo’s Champions League Goals Record

Barcelona's Lionel Messi celebrates his first goal against Bayern Munich in the UEFA Champions League Semi Final First Leg at The Nou Camp in Barcelona on May 5, 2015.
Gustau Nacarino—Reuters Barcelona's Lionel Messi celebrates his first goal against Bayern Munich in the UEFA Champions League Semi Final First Leg at The Nou Camp in Barcelona on May 5, 2015.

With these two stunners in Wednesday's match

Barcelona forward Lionel Messi scored a pair of goals in Wednesday’s Champions League semifinal match against Bayern Munich that didn’t just secure the win, but and put him ahead of another soccer legend for the most goals scored in the competition.

It was on Tuesday that Cristiano Ronaldo of Real Madrid took the record, Sports Illustrated reports, with his 76th goal coming in a game against Juventus. But Messi came roaring back Wednesday with two beauties, pushing his total to 77.

Both players will have at least one more chance to this competition to boost their numbers. Bayern and Barcelona will go head to head next Tuesday, while Real Madrid and Juventus will play the following day. The Champions League final takes place in Berlin on June 6.

TIME Archaeology

Oldest Known Ancestor of Modern Birds Is Discovered

Holotype of Archaeornithura meemannae, the oldest ancestor of modern birds has been dug up in China which evolved almost six million years earlier than previously thought.
National News—Zuma Press Holotype of Archaeornithura meemannae, the oldest ancestor of modern birds has been dug up in China which evolved almost six million years earlier than previously thought.

The discovery indicates that modern birds originated roughly six million years before previously thought

Scientists said in a paper published Tuesday that a newly discovered species is the oldest known relative of living birds.

The Archaeornithura meemannae lived roughly 130.7 million years ago in northeastern China, about 6 million years before the previously thought origin of modern birds, according to the researchers who published their findings in Nature Communications.

The bird—which looks largely similar to modern birds—was reconstructed mostly from imagination but also from intact plumage and skeletal features, a researcher told the Washington Post. In part because of its long legs, the scientists believe it patrolled water sources looking for food.

While a separate bird species that lived some 145 million years ago remains the oldest known bird, but it had no living descendants.

TIME Companies

A Photo of Your Feet Can Give a Pair of Shoes to a Child in Need

Feet on rocky beach, high angle view
Getty Images

Toms is giving away up to 1 million pairs of shoes

Toms wants you to Instagram your feet—just make sure you’re not wearing shoes.

The footwear company will offer a pair of shoes to a child in need in exchange for each photo (one per person) of bare feet that is posted to Instagram between May 5 and May 21 with the hashtag #WITHOUTSHOES. Up to 1 million pairs will be donated; by Tuesday evening, the hashtag had more than 31,000 posts.

The initiative is part of its eighth annual One Day Without Shoes campaign. The total number of shoes it will gave away will be announced on May 21.

TIME Law

Police Officer Sues Starbucks After Spilling Hot Coffee on Himself

The Raleigh officer is suing the coffee giant for $50,000

A police officer in North Carolina is suing Starbucks for $50,000 after he apparently spilled a free cup of coffee on himself.

In the latest legal battle over hot coffee, Raleigh police officer Matthew Korh says the lid popped off his coffee cup and then the cup caved in, spewing the liquid onto his lap and resulting in burns, blisters and emotional damage. Korh’s defense team began making his case on Monday for compensation of medical costs, attorney fees and damages, according to WRAL, and Kohr claims the stress of the incident aggravated his Crohn’s disease, leading to a surgery to remove part of his intestine.

Starbucks, for its part, refutes the claim since the coffee was free and says that out of about 4 billion cups from the same manufacturer that are served each year, there have been 59 similar incidents. Testimony is expected to start by the week’s end.

[WRAL]

TIME People

Read Sheryl Sandberg’s Emotional Tribute to Her Late Husband David Goldberg

Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg and husband Dave Goldberg attending the Allen & Company Sun Valley Conference on July 9, 2014 in Sun Valley, Idaho.
Scott Olson—Getty Images Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg and husband Dave Goldberg attending the Allen & Company Sun Valley Conference on July 9, 2014 in Sun Valley, Idaho.

"Dave was my rock"

Sheryl Sandberg, the Facebook executive whose husband died suddenly on May 2, posted a moving tribute Tuesday to her late husband.

David Goldberg, the 47-year-old CEO of SurveyMonkey, died after suffering severe head trauma while exercising at a resort in Punta Mita, a state official in Mexico said this week, the Associated Press reports. He was found next to a treadmill in a pool of blood and later died at a hospital.

“We had 11 truly joyful years of the deepest love, happiest marriage, and truest partnership that I could imagine,” Sandberg wrote of Goldberg.

Sanberg also spoke movingly about her husband at a memorial service at Stanford University on Tuesday morning, growing tearful as she described their 11-year marriage. The service was led by the family’s rabbi and included a performance by Bono, who sang “One.”

See Sandberg’s full Facebook memorial post here:

Read next: Dave Goldberg and Sheryl Sandberg’s Unlikely Love Story

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