Sep 132010
 September 13, 2010  Posted by  Court, Featured News, Surveillance

David Kravets writes:

Bowing to the Obama administration, a federal appeals court Monday gutted its own decision that had dramatically narrowed the government’s search-and-seizure powers in the digital age.

The 9-2 ruling by the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals nullifies Miranda-style guidelines the court promulgated last year that were designed to protect Fourth Amendment privacy rights during court-authorized computer searches. Supreme Court Justice Elena Kagan, as solicitor general last year, had urged the court to reverse itself amid complaints that federal prosecutions were being complicated, and computer searches were grinding to a halt, because of the detailed guidelines.

Read more on Threat Level.

The revised ruling in United States of America v.  Comprehensive Drug Testing can be found here.   I’m sure there will be much more commentary and analysis of the revised ruling and I’ll post links to other commentaries as they appear.

Note: I just finished my first read-through of the decision. Maybe I’m missing something, but I don’t see where the Ninth CA “gutted” its earlier decision. I look forward to blawgers discussing it.

Update: Okay, now I understand why some people see it as “gutted.” It’s not really “gutted” in terms of the case at hand, but “gutted” in terms of the guidelines the previous opinion had incorporated for future cases. The revised opinion does not spell out such detailed and strict guidelines as part of the actual decision.

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