FourthAmendment.com brings us news of a court opinion that Transportation Security Administration (TSA) employees engaged in an unreasonable search of a passenger’s luggage and that the child pornography they uncovered should be suppressed. In United States v. McCarty, the court held:
Despite the testimony indicating that the TSA employees searched the photographs solely to determine if any children were in harm’s way, the government argues that the search was nonetheless proper because Andrade was required to inspect the photographs for sheet explosives. Pl.’s Nov. 3 Suppl. Opp’n 2-6. The court readily accepts that a packet of photographs may cause a dense item alarm and TSA protocol requires the TSA employee to ensure that the photographs do not include any sheet explosives. The testimony, however, does not establish that Andrade and Moniz examined the photographs for sheet explosives — rather, after they noticed the photographs that were initially visible, they inspected the content of additional photographs for the purpose of determining their criminal nature.
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