Tuesday, August 10, 2010

If Big Brother is Watching, He Needs a Warrant, Court Says

Wall Street Journal
August 9, 2010

Big Brother may well be watching. But if he’s planted a satellite tracking device in your car, he’d better have a warrant, according to a federal appeals panel in the District of Columbia.

Three judges on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit ruled that by placing a Global Positioning System device inside the car of Antoine Jones, a nightclub owner, and tracking his movements for several weeks without a warrant, law enforcement authorities violated his Fourth Amendment protection against unreasonable searches. The court reversed Jones’s conviction on conspiracy to distribute cocaine.

“This is the first decision on the federal appellate side that’s really given momentum to the requirement for a warrant,” says Daniel Prywes, an attorney with Bryan Cave in Washington who represented the American Civil Liberties Union.


Read the decision