Bob Barr comments:
Laptop computers and other personal electronic devices such as cell phones, I-phones and Blackberries are increasingly attractive to government agents because of the vast amounts of data users store on them. Unfortunately, in the absence of federal law protecting them from government searches without warrants or even reasonable suspicion of wrongdoing, federal courts are permitting such warrantless searches.
First, why didn’t the government agents obtain a search warrant for the computer? If the agents already suspected this individual of trafficking in child porn, why didn’t they simply go to a federal magistrate and secure a search warrant? Second, and more troubling, is the almost cavalier manner in which the US District Court judge in Houston dismissed the suspect’s challenge to the airport search.
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