Banana Republicans monkey around with emails : FBI Violations of Fourth Amendment -- Again
In getting the ‘new’ Clinton emails, did the FBI violate the Constitution?
Raw Story : 30 OCT 2016 AT 14:22 ET
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In his letter, Comey says the FBI “has learned” of the existence of emails “that may be pertinent” to … Hillary Clinton’s use of a personal email server during her tenure as secretary of state … although “the FBI cannot yet assess whether or not this material may be significant,”
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The Fourth Amendment to the Constitution states that no search warrant can be issued unless it “particularly describes the place to be searched and the things to be seized.” Did the warrant for Weiner’s laptop “particularly describe” emails sent to or received by Abedin while working at the State Department as material that could be seized as evidence of the alleged sexting crime? That seems highly unlikely.
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Indeed, why were federal agents looking at any emails belonging to the suspect’s estranged spouse? Surely the FBI didn’t think Abedin was involved in the alleged sexting crime.
The agents might make the implausible claim that they saw Abedin’s emails inadvertently when looking for evidence related to the sexting crime. … the FBI could have sought a new search warrant for specific Abedin messages, swearing to a federal judge that there was probable cause those particular emails were evidence of a crime
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there is clear evidence that the FBI regularly and deliberately oversteps constitutional boundaries with regard to Americans’ email messages.
In one case now pending in New Jersey, the FBI went completely beyond the limits of a search warrant to download the entire contents of a lawyer’s cellphone. Incredibly, federal prosecutors in that case are telling a federal judge they can legally keep and use the downloaded data even if the judge rules it was obtained in violation of the Constitution.
In New York City, federal court records reveal the government obtained another search warrant that clearly violated the Fourth Amendment. That one ordered Microsoft to turn over the entire contents of a web-based email account and authorized “email by email review.”
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Last spring, a bipartisan bill was introduced in Congress that would . . . create a National Commission on Security and Technology Challenges including experts from many sectors such as law enforcement, the technology industry, the intelligence community, and the privacy and civil liberties communities. The commission would review the laws about warrants for digital data and recommend changes in how they should be used.
That effort followed the FBI’s ill-advised attempt to get a court order forcing Apple to create and give to the government software eliminating the user privacy and security features of the iPhone.
In the wake of this week’s new evidence of further overstepping by the FBI, passing this bill should be one of the first tasks for Congress when it reconvenes after the election.