Muslim residents of New Jersey will be in court to try to reverse a ruling that gave New York City police the right to monitor their activities.

The plaintiffs Tuesday include a U.S. soldier, a school principal and several Rutgers University students. They believe the ruling from U.S. District Judge William Martini of Newark violates their civil rights.

The case involves the New York Police Department's decision to spy on Muslim groups at mosques, restaurants and schools since 2002. The practice has come to light through a series of Associated Press articles.

Martini said that police could not keep an eye on Muslim terrorist activities "without monitoring the Muslim community itself."

Two civil rights groups are appealing his ruling to the Third U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Philadelphia.