Sep 082011
 
 September 8, 2011  Court, Surveillance, U.S.

You-Jin Han writes on The Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press:

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia held yesterday that the U.S. Department of Justice must release case docket information in certain criminal cases resulting in convictions or guilty pleas.

The ruling applies to cases in which the government used cellphone location tracking data without first obtaining a warrant supported by probable cause and potentially signals a departure from the “practical obscurity” privacy argument established by the U.S. Supreme roughly 22 years ago.

In American Civil Liberties Union v. U.S. Department of Justice, the court held that the public interest in the requested materials outweighed any claimed privacy interests in the records. Therefore, exemption 7(C) of the federal Freedom of Information Act did not bar disclosure of the materials.

Read more on RCFP

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