Senate Passes Anti-Terrorism Legislation, Carper Calls for Swift Action to Better Ensure Citizen Safety

WASHINGTON, DC – Senator Tom Carper today joined the Senate in passing tough new anti-terrorism legislation that gives the federal government a greater ability to apprehend terrorists and those who harbor them. “This is an important step forward on the road to capturing anti-American terrorists and punishing those who harbor them,” Carper said. “This bill gives law enforcement vital new tools to track down terrorists before they can act against our nation.” The legislation, which is on its way to President Bush for his signature, makes it illegal to knowingly harbor a terrorist; increases the statute of limitations for terrorist crimes; grants the federal government the ability to assign “roving wiretaps” on any phone a suspected terrorist might use; and makes it easier for the US intelligence community and criminal investigators to share information. The bill authorizes enough funds to triple the number of INS and border patrol agents along the US-Canada border. The Senate Banking Committee, of which Senator Carper is a member, recently passed out of committee a bill that would curb the global financial networks and money laundering efforts that support terrorist activity. The anti-terrorism bill that passed today also gives the federal government the power to target foreign banks that may be engaged in laundering money for terrorists. “The attacks against the World Trade Center and Pentagon were well planned and well funded. Those responsible for the recent anthrax attacks likely are as well. We must stop at the source the flow of resources to these terrorists,” Carper said. “The financial network that funds our attackers is a threat to our national security.”