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FBI backs record-keeping on prepaid cell phones

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WASHINGTON (AP) - FBI Director Robert Mueller has endorsed anti-terrorism legislation that would require prepaid cell-phone sellers to keep records of buyers' identities.

The bill sponsored by Sens. Charles Schumer, D-N.Y., and John Cornyn, R-Texas, would require purchasers to present identification at the point of sale.

At a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing, Mueller said the bureau would be very supportive of such a reporting requirement and that it would be essential to the success of investigations.

Prepaid cell phones have long been used by drug dealers who want to mask their identities, and more recently have been used by alleged terrorists, most prominently by the defendant, Faisal Shahzad, in the recent Times Square bombing attempt.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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