The United States Justice Department led by Attorney General Eric Holder secretly obtained two months of telephone records of reporters and editors for The Associated Press in April and May 2012 in what the news cooperative's top executive called a "massive and unprecedented intrusion" into how news organizations gather news.
Records were seized for more than 20 separate phone lines assigned to AP journalists and up to 100 journalists could have had their call details monitored.
AP attorneys claim that the records obtained by the Justice Department listed incoming and outgoing calls, and the duration of each call, for the work and personal phone numbers of individual reporters, general AP office numbers in New York, Washington and Hartford, Conn., and the main number for AP reporters in the House of Representatives press gallery.
The purpose of the monitoring is believed to have been to trace confidential government sources contacted by reporters, specifically as part of an ongoing criminal investigation into how the AP learned of a classified CIA operation to stop a bomb plot last year.
Government seizes AP phone records - POLITICO.com
These latest revelations will add to the pressure on the Obama administration already under fire over Benghazi and the IRS' politically motivated targeting of conservative groups.