Former New Jersey Gov. Richard Codey says two executive orders he signed in 2005 gave the New York Police Department only very limited rights to operate in New Jersey -- and did not authorize spying on Muslims at colleges and mosques.

The orders gave the NYPD "all law enforcement powers" to provide enhanced security for trains and ferries. Codey tells The Associated Press he acted on the advice of state Homeland Security officials after terrorists bombed trains in London.

Documents obtained by The Associated Press show the NYPD conducted broad surveillance of Muslims in Newark and other New Jersey communities, including at mosques and colleges. Codey emphasized there is nothing in the orders authorizing spying at colleges, mosques or anywhere else.


Meanwhile, New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg says the operation monitoring Muslims in New Jersey and elsewhere was "legal," `'appropriate" and "constitutional."

He said today in an interview that authorities will continue to take all possible legal steps to keep New York safe.


“Executive Orders 43 and 44 that I signed while Governor explicitly stated that any operation by New York law enforcement was authorized only on our railroad right-of-ways and ferry terminals.

“These were signed amid the backdrop of the then-recent horrific London train bombings. My priority, as Governor at the time, was to protect our citizens and without these executive orders, the NYPD, by law, was required to exit all trains and ferries before entering New Jersey.

“These executive orders, considering the times, were common sense measures to allow for increased collaboration between our two States and provide greater security to our citizens by permitting the NYPD to remain on our trains and ferries when intelligence deemed it necessary.

“These executive orders accomplished that and I would do it again today, tomorrow or any other time in the future to protect the citizens of New Jersey.

“Any operation that was conducted beyond the limited scope of the railroads and ferries that I authorized clearly violates these executive orders.

“To be clear, nothing in them talks about any race or religion and there is no inference to profiling.

“You would always expect to be notified by another State’s law enforcement if they are conducting operations in your State. There is a disagreement between the NYPD and Newark on that issue. However, that still does not take away from the fact that any operation that went beyond the railroad right-of-ways and ferry terminals violated the intent of these executive orders.”


(Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)