DHS Investigators Argue The Border Warrant Exception Covers Searches Performed Miles From The Border

from the DHS:-everywhere-you-want-to-be dept

The DHS is back in court, arguing for its "right" to expand border searches to cover the entire country. The case in which Homeland Security investigators are making this dubious claim involves the placement of a GPS device on a truck crossing the Canadian border… which FBI agents then tracked all the way down into California.

The "bust" carried out in Southern California turned up plenty of legal frozen pastries and four bags of a cocaine-like substances known as regular-ass sugar. The FBI posited this was a trial run for actual drugs and chose to take its collected evidence to court, where it was promptly thrown out by the presiding judge. As the judge saw it, tracking a vehicle inland requires a warrant. The "border exception" to warrant requirements can't be expanded to cover searches performed miles from the 100-mile "Constitution-free zone."

The government maintains the judge's opinion is wrong, according to this report by Cyrus Farivar of Ars Technica.

A top Homeland Security Investigations official has told a federal court that it remains the agency's policy that officers can install a GPS tracking device on cars entering the United States "without a warrant or individualized suspicion" for up to 48 hours.

There is no such time limit, HSI Assistant Director Matthew C. Allen also told the court, for putting such trackers on "airplane, commercial vehicles, and semi-tractor trailers, which has a significantly reduced expectation of privacy in the location of their vehicles."

The argument, laid out very briefly in the government's filing [PDF], is basically that DHS policy says this sort of thing is OK, so there's no need to worry about Constitutional protections or precedential Supreme Court decisions.

HSI exercises its border-search authority for the purpose of protecting national security and revenue of the United States. Pursuant to this authority, it is policy that a customs officer may install a GPS tracking device on a vehicle at the United States border without a warrant or individualized suspicion. HSI limits warrantless GPS monitoring to 48 hours, with the exception of airplanes, commercial vehicles, and semi-tractor trailers, which have a significantly reduced expectation of privacy in the location of their vehicles. It is HSI's position that such policy is consistent with the U.S. Supreme Court's decisions in United States v. Jones, 565 U.S. 400 (2012), and United States v. Flores-Montana, 541 U.S. 149 (2004).

It may be HSI's position but it's not the judge's position, nor is it a Constitutionally-sound position. The judge has already determined this inland tracking required a warrant, so simply restating DHS policy isn't going to reverse this decision. The government will probably get a chance to expound on this argument at a later date, but for now, all it's offering is a conclusory reiteration of internal policy. That's not even close to the same thing as an argument supported by caselaw and precedential decisions.

But for the rest of us, the DHS is at least clarifying its stance on the border warrant exception: it can track you anywhere you travel in the country, so long as a) it's within 48 hours of the warrantless placement of the tracking device, or b) the vehicle involved has any commercial purpose. The argument it barely makes still doesn't address the fact there's no current exception for warrantless deployment of GPS tracking devices.

The "border exception" the government claims exists actually doesn't. The law says nothing about border freebies and vehicles crossing the border are, more likely than not, going to travel outside of the area where the border exception is applicable. This is basically the DHS claiming because it can search your vehicle without a warrant at a border crossing, it can search it anywhere else in the US provided your vehicle crossed the US border at some point in the recent past. If the government can somehow convince the court its border protection mandates allow for inland searches, the Fourth Amendment will be null and void.


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  • icon
    That Anonymous Coward (profile), 11 Oct 2018 @ 4:26am

    How about we get back our rights & stop letting them keep chipping away at them??

    OOOOH they found sugar!
    In some states the quickie test still says thats drugs & they steal your car.

    This doesn't make us more secure, this makes us subject to the whims of idiots with badges... they hired what 2 serial killers so far? Perhaps they aren't really good at picking the right people to stop the 'bad guys'.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      David, 11 Oct 2018 @ 6:47am

      Re:

      OOOOH they found sugar! In some states the quickie test still says thats drugs & they steal your car.

      Uh, civil asset forfeiture does not require an actual charge. They don't need a quickie test. They can just say that it looked like cocaine to them, flush the sugar down the toilet and confiscate the car.

      If you invest a few thousands in court fees, they might give it back to you a year later, assuming that they didn't crash it in the meantime.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 11 Oct 2018 @ 7:07am

        Re: Re:

        They will have auctioned that car off long before that.. unless it has serious satellite radio! They like those satellite radios.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        That Anonymous Coward (profile), 12 Oct 2018 @ 3:57am

        Re: Re:

        They decided, with nothing more than a tingling in their tiny brains, that these people were hauling drugs.
        They tracked the vehicle for days... they raid and find sugar.
        Rather than admit that requiring evidence beyond a tingle should be the right way, they claim it was a test run to get drugs into the country so they need the right to track all the tingles & who needs courts to say yes or no.

        Here is the 'unintended' outcome they are pushing for, serial killer see's a pretty face, slaps a tracker on the car, uses it to stalk & then murder the target. They claim it is an isolated incident & not a reason to reconsider the easily abused system.

        Can't tell the good guys from the bad guys without a program but the good guys have no program for keeping the bad guys out. Perhaps instead of expanding their powers of abuse, we should make them focus on getting actual good guys who believe the law of the land is the law of the land & we don't need special carve out of rights to let them abuse citizens.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 14 Oct 2018 @ 1:30am

          Re: Re: Re:

          Making matters worse I've heard from other sources that it was based off of illicit wiretaps and went with parallel construction. Since if it was a legitimate wiretap then they should be able to nab them on conspiracy with what they discovered and verified.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 11 Oct 2018 @ 4:48am

    DHS seems to be really good at finding the bad guys. The trouble is, they keep hiring said bad guys.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 11 Oct 2018 @ 6:52am

      Re:

      Only bad guys can stop bad guys. We all know how bad guys walk allover good guys.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 11 Oct 2018 @ 6:56am

      Re:

      You put bad guys on the payroll so you can keep an eye on them.. make them believe they are good guys going after bad guys! This psychology seems to be working.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 11 Oct 2018 @ 7:21am

      Re:

      "DHS seems to be really good at finding the bad guys"

      You forgot the /s
      or maybe the implication is that they "find" themselves?

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      stderric (profile), 11 Oct 2018 @ 10:59am

      Re:

      DHS seems to be really good at finding the bad guys. The trouble is, they keep hiring said bad guys.

      Low-cost solution to all our problems? Find the DHS org chart and swap the "Human Resources" and "HS Investigators" headings.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 11 Oct 2018 @ 4:55am

    If DHS is not following the constitution, it needs to go

    The basis for the legitimacy of this government is the constitution and if DHS can't seem to understand that, it is invalid, not everything else.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      Gary (profile), 11 Oct 2018 @ 6:13am

      Re: If DHS is not following the constitution

      The basis for US law is "Common Law:"

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Common_law

      Which is laws interpreted by judges using precedent. If precedent supports this then that is how things roll. You can't just declare something constitutional. It could be fought all the way to the top, but that seems unlikely.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 11 Oct 2018 @ 7:25am

        Re: Re: If DHS is not following the constitution

        bullshit

        I have heard over and over how we are a nation of laws ...
        and then everything one sees in real life indicates this is simply not the case.

        You seem confused about how the courts operate, precedence is not defined by your nebulous "common law". The use of the term common law could argue for anything - just claim it is common law. I'm surprised trump has not tried this.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • icon
          nasch (profile), 12 Oct 2018 @ 2:42pm

          Re: Re: Re: If DHS is not following the constitution

          You seem confused about how the courts operate, precedence is not defined by your nebulous "common law".

          Actually that's all common law means - judicial precedents.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        nasch (profile), 12 Oct 2018 @ 2:44pm

        Re: Re: If DHS is not following the constitution

        If precedent supports this then that is how things roll.

        A court can always go against precedent and decide that something is in fact unconstitutional. For example, if something like Korematsu came up again, it would almost certainly be ruled unconstitutional despite the Korematsu decision saying otherwise.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 11 Oct 2018 @ 6:26am

      Re: not following Constitution

      ... neither Congress, Presidents, nor Supreme Court follow the Constitution -- and all 3 Federal Branches have severely violated it for generations.

      So what's you plan for getting them to go away ??


      DHS excesses merely reflect the outlook of the top management in the Federal Government.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        Gary (profile), 11 Oct 2018 @ 6:30am

        Re: Re: not following Constitution

        So what's you plan for getting them to go away ??

        I don't have intentions for eliminating the government, I just pointed out that they are following "Common Law."

        You are the one that is in need of a plan here, mate!

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 11 Oct 2018 @ 6:58am

          Re: Re: Re: not following Constitution

          The U.S. Constitution is legally superior to "common law" & precedent.

          Formal U.S. Constitution can NOT be over-ridden by common law!

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

          • identicon
            Christenson, 11 Oct 2018 @ 9:26am

            Re: Re: Re: Re: not following Constitution

            Everyone, stop thinking "common law" is *always* a dog-whistle from a SovCit...

            Common Law, as used here is the Karma (that which has gone before) in the courts.

            If, *IF* you can get the courts to decide it, of course the constitution is supposed to take precedence...but that is a *very expensive* proposition with lots of friction. Gideon versus Wainwright took YEARS to get to the supreme court and establish a right to effective counsel. Same for Miranda, all the other famous cases.

            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

            • identicon
              Anonymous Coward, 11 Oct 2018 @ 9:38am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: not following Constitution

              I'm curious, since you seem to think you have knowledge in the field, has any court room in the US ever heard an argument that included the phrase "common Law" and then used that in an effort to persuade the court to see things from that pov?

              If so, have any of these instances resulted in the court siding with the "common Law" argument?

              If not, then wtf are you going about?

              reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

              • identicon
                Christenson, 11 Oct 2018 @ 10:19am

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: not following Constitution

                I'm saying that, *IN THIS CONTEXT*, the citation to Common law was *not* some SovCit trying to play with everyone. It was used in its correct technical sense.

                As to Common law itself, have a look at the second paragraph page 11 of the court opinion in the following Techdirt post:
                https://www.techdirt.com/articles/20180916/18265640652/after-fielding-third-case-point-court-fi nally-decides-curtilage-violating-knock-talks-are-clearly-unconstitutional.shtml

                First, the opinion as a whole cites precedent after precedent...that which other courts have decided before.

                Then:
                For centuries, the common law has protected the curtilage of the house. See *Oliver*, 466 US at 180. And the supreme court long has held that the curtilage is "considered part of the home itself for fourth amendment purposes"...

                Oh my...this opinion is *full* of the common law! And it is not at all unique.

                reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                • identicon
                  Anonymous Coward, 11 Oct 2018 @ 11:17am

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: not following Constitution

                  It is interesting that your "curtilage" has been violated on a routine basis.

                  There was a case where a farmer did not want leo cameras on his property but was told to shove it because they were investigating his neighbor .. something, something, drugs is all they have to say and bingo, no impediment to breaking numerous laws - no mention of common anything.

                  reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                  • identicon
                    Christenson, 11 Oct 2018 @ 11:49am

                    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: not following Constitution

                    Stop projecting...that was a court opinion! Also, worth noting how long it took to get the victim vindicated by said opinion.

                    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                    • identicon
                      Anonymous Coward, 11 Oct 2018 @ 12:10pm

                      Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: not following Constitution

                      Projecting? .. as if it were me who did whatever ..
                      What does the term mean to you?

                      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                      • identicon
                        Christenson, 11 Oct 2018 @ 1:06pm

                        Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: not following Constitution

                        Projecting... as in assuming things from your own experience (someone got in my curtilage)... that are not in evidence. I simply cited a document for the proposition that "common law" has a technical meaning and is used that way legally.

                        I'm just a fly on the wall here. You are still short a citation for your farmer story.

                        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                        • identicon
                          Anonymous Coward, 12 Oct 2018 @ 6:31am

                          Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: not following Constitution

                          "Projecting... as in assuming things from your own experience"

                          That is not what others are referring to when they use the term, perhaps it would benefit your communications if you were to use the same language.

                          The following is from wikipedia but there is plenty of material to chose from if you so desire.

                          Psychological projection is a theory in psychology in which the human ego defends itself against unconscious impulses or qualities (both positive and negative) by denying their existence in themselves while attributing them to others
                          https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Psychological_projection

                          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                  • identicon
                    Anonymous Coward, 11 Oct 2018 @ 12:01pm

                    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: not following Constitution

                    Where on the farm property did they place the camera, as curtilage is the grounds immediately surrounding a dwelling and closely associated building, but doe not include open fields beyond the immediate surroundings.

                    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                    • identicon
                      Anonymous Coward, 11 Oct 2018 @ 12:12pm

                      Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: not following Constitution

                      Private property is private property.

                      Sure they can simply say they were not in violation and to go shove it, but that does not make everyone happy does it?

                      Strange how their story changes when it is their guy who is having private property issues.

                      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

            • icon
              stderric (profile), 11 Oct 2018 @ 11:11am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: not following Constitution

              Everyone, stop thinking "common law" is always a dog-whistle from a SovCit...

              Maybe not a dog whistle, but it's a bit of a Pavlovian bell for the Flag button :)

              (Honestly, I was mousing towards the flag before I'd consciously registered that that first mention of "common law" was from Gary... hell, before I'd even consciously registered the words "common law".)

              reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

              • icon
                Gary (profile), 11 Oct 2018 @ 6:35pm

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: not following Constitution

                (Honestly, I was mousing towards the flag before I'd consciously registered that that first mention of "common law" was from Gary... hell, before I'd even consciously registered the words "common law".)

                Thanks for stopping and considering that the SovCit definition of Common Law is the actual opposite of the textbook definition mate!

                reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

          • identicon
            Anonymous Coward, 11 Oct 2018 @ 11:04am

            Re: Re: Re: Re: not following Constitution

            The U.S. Constitution is legally superior to "common law" & precedent.

            By text perhaps, but SCOTUS looks to these things (as they were in the 1700s) to determine how to "interpret" the Constitution. Laws contrary to its plain meaning have been upheld on this basis.

            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

            • identicon
              Anonymous Coward, 11 Oct 2018 @ 11:20am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: not following Constitution

              Yeah, the courts have been known to bend the rules for their buddies while making an example out of the lesser standing citizens., because Law 'N Order is the rule of the land.

              and they wonder why some people laugh at them.

              reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 11 Oct 2018 @ 7:28am

          Re: Re: Re: not following Constitution

          You previously pointed out your misunderstanding of the USA judicial system - that I agree with.

          Why does anyone need a plan mate? Seems our glorious leader does not follow a plan, why should we?

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 11 Oct 2018 @ 6:22am

    So, DHS will continue to place GPS trackers without warrants and Judges will continue throw out the evidence.

    So the only ones really out anything is the tax payers.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 11 Oct 2018 @ 6:45am

    I commented about a year ago that if they can exempt a 100 miles inward from the border, what's to stop them from expanding to the entire country.. maybe they read techdirt.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Anonymous Anonymous Coward (profile), 11 Oct 2018 @ 7:17am

    Who's on the case...top men. What top men? TOP men!

    "A top Homeland Security Investigations official has told a federal court that it remains the agency's policy..."

    If a top man can, with a straight face, tell a federal judge that their agencies policy has greater authority than the Constitution, then they need new top men. Of course this is just the government looking to establish a president, similar to the FBI dragging its feet in the Apple cellphone case.

    So the serious question becomes how do we go about taking down agencies like DHS and FBI for failure to respect the Constitution...in their policies? Who will do it is another question to consider, DOJ? Ha!

    A special prosecutor or five need to be appointed, but who's gonna do that? We need an executive to be elected who is not interested in re-election and has the people in mind. Now who's gonna do that?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 11 Oct 2018 @ 7:57am

      Re: Who's on the case...top men. What top men? TOP men!

      Of course this is just the government looking to establish a president,

      And I thought the Orange one was already exercising presidential power, when the courts let him.:-)

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      That One Guy (profile), 11 Oct 2018 @ 8:05am

      Re: Who's on the case...top men. What top men? TOP men!

      If a top man can, with a straight face, tell a federal judge that their agencies policy has greater authority than the Constitution, then they need new top men.

      On the contrary that is exactly the sort of person they want on the payroll, as it helps them get the precedent they want. They want people who can assert with a straight face that internal rules trump the constitution as it then forces the judge on the defense, who must then point out that no, they don't get to just make their own rules like that and expect them to be legal just because they say so.

      With the number of spineless judges that crumble the second the magic words 'national security' are mentioned there's decent odds that such an assertion will be granted as valid.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        David, 11 Oct 2018 @ 8:54am

        Re: Re: Who's on the case...top men. What top men? TOP men!

        They want people who can assert with a straight face that internal rules trump the constitution as it then forces the judge on the defense, who must then point out that no, they don't get to just make their own rules like that and expect them to be legal just because they say so.

        "Qualified immunity" very much means that the "good guys" get to make their own rules like that and expect them to be legal just because they say so. "I thought I should be allowed to do that" is quite legally valid authorization for a government official.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          Punkin Head, 11 Oct 2018 @ 9:43am

          Re: Re: Re: Who's on the case...top men. What top men? TOP men!

          I thought that just being a celebrity allowed me to simply grab women by the genitals, why do I need immunity for something that I am allowed to do?

          Why am I not supposed to take money from foreign governments in return for removing sanctions? I am immune right? I can murder people on mainstreet - right? If we have nukews, why can't we use them?

          No Collusion

          Covfefe

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    That One Guy (profile), 11 Oct 2018 @ 7:59am

    'It's a test run... to see if we can get away with it later.'

    The "bust" carried out in Southern California turned up plenty of legal frozen pastries and four bags of a cocaine-like substances known as regular-ass sugar. The FBI posited this was a trial run for actual drugs and chose to take its collected evidence to court, where it was promptly thrown out by the presiding judge.

    Just... let that sink in. Unconstitutional search, and they try to salvage it by claiming they were engaged in a test run. That would be like someone breaking into a store, getting caught, and then arguing that they were just doing a 'test run' and should be let off the hook because look, they didn't take anything before they were caught!

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 11 Oct 2018 @ 10:22am

      Re: 'It's a test run... to see if we can get away with it later.'

      I think the idea is that the "criminals" were doing a trial run with sugar, to see if they get caught or if they need to fine-tune their process.

      So ... it's more like arresting someone for shopping at a store because they are obviously just there as a trial run for robbing it later.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        That One Guy (profile), 11 Oct 2018 @ 10:38am

        Re: Re: 'It's a test run... to see if we can get away with it later.'

        That would make a bit more sense, but just raise the point of 'if you have sufficient evidence that they *will* be running drugs, then you have sufficient evidence to get a gorram warrant and catch them in the act. If you don't have enough for a warrant, then you don't have enough for a search.'

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 11 Oct 2018 @ 12:28pm

          Re: Re: Re: 'It's a test run... to see if we can get away with it later.'

          Precrime punishment is here folks. brady law

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Toom1275 (profile), 11 Oct 2018 @ 8:20am

    Because going to their favorite rubber stamp for a GPS warrent a couple days after the fact is just tooooo burdensome.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      David, 11 Oct 2018 @ 8:56am

      Re:

      There is a limit to the number of warrants you can rubberstamp in a given amount of time without suffering from RSI.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 11 Oct 2018 @ 9:46am

        Re: Re:

        Maybe the officers in charge were women, because we all know they do not want to do the work - according to Mitch anyway.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Jordan Chandler, 11 Oct 2018 @ 9:01am

    How is it not null and void?

    100 miles inland is like most of the populated USA. Also the 4th amendment doesn't mention the border exception.

    Your laws are laughable.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      That One Guy (profile), 11 Oct 2018 @ 9:17am

      Re: How is it not null and void?

      I can't remember offhand if it's 2/3rd's of the US population or 3/4th's, but yes, 100 miles from the border covers the overwhelming majority of the US population.

      As to why it's allowed, spineless judges who fold as soon as someone mentions the magical words 'national security' and/or claims that if the people wearing badges aren't allowed to do anything they want the Bad People will win.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      The Wanderer (profile), 11 Oct 2018 @ 8:32pm

      Re: How is it not null and void?

      Where the "border exception" is read into the Fourth Amendment is in the word "reasonable", and in precedent on determining what searches are and are not reasonable (and therefore do not or do require a warrant).

      My understanding is that long-established precedent has determined that searching luggage at border crossings is reasonable, and so is searching vehicles (for stowaways and/or people being smuggled, et cetera) at those same border crossings;

      and then that so is searching those same things *near* a border, but not actually at a crossing, because someone could have crossed without passing through a checkpoint;

      and then that so is searching houses, et cetera, near a border, because someone who crossed withough passing through a checkpoint could have hidden there;

      and then that anywhere someone could have travelled to from the border in a short amount of time (a few hours) is near enough to the border for all those previous things to still be reasonable.

      And of course in the modern day, you can travel a hundred miles in less than two hours by car, so of course anything within a hundred miles is close enough to the border to fall within that last determination.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 11 Oct 2018 @ 9:31am

    Don't forget any airport that has international flights is also considered a border. So the 100 mi area circles them also.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 11 Oct 2018 @ 9:49am

    Apparently only the rich elite ruling class are considered to be people while the rest of us, the minions, are only 3/5ths of a person and are afforded commensurable accommodations that we should be grateful to receive.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Get off my cyber-lawn! (profile), 11 Oct 2018 @ 10:36am

    Just arguing it wrong

    the government simply needs to point out that they aren't tracking the vehicle. They are tracking the GPS device, which is government property and therefore entirely theirs to actually track. It isn't their fault the careless vehicle operator failed to inspect/remove the device once it was secretly attached to the automobile!

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      That One Guy (profile), 11 Oct 2018 @ 10:41am

      I'd like to laugh, but...

      The sad thing is with how often judges bend over backwards to grant anyone with a badge cover it is entirely possible that there are judges who would accept that as a valid excuse.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 11 Oct 2018 @ 11:26am

      Re: Just arguing it wrong

      Reminds me of the guy who took his vehicle to a car shop only to be told the car had a tracker attached.

      The government claims it can do this to vehicles parked in a private driveway.

      So the government wants their expensive device back but they abandoned it on private property and it should now belong to the guy being tracked. But, of course the law only applies to the little people.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      btr1701 (profile), 11 Oct 2018 @ 11:39am

      Re: Just arguing it wrong

      I've often wondered about the legalities involved with people who discover the tracking devices.

      If you find a tracking device on your car, do you have to leave it there? If you take it off and just leave it in your garage, can you be charged with obstruction for not letting the government track your every movement?

      What if you find it, leave it on the car, but start using a different car so the government can't track your movement? Still obstruction?

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 11 Oct 2018 @ 12:15pm

        Re: Re: Just arguing it wrong

        I would package it up and ship it to Saudi Arabia.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        That One Guy (profile), 11 Oct 2018 @ 2:33pm

        Re: Re: Just arguing it wrong

        If nothing else it could make for an interesting court case.

        They claim the tracker is government property and the suspect/recipient of a fishing expedition therefore has no right to tamper with it.

        The owner of the vehicle shoots back by pointing out that it was attached to their property, and as such they have a right to decide whether not to allow it to remain attached.

        I suspect the case would mostly be decided by how dazzled the judge in question was by shiny things, in that case a badge.

        Of course that's only the legal side of things, given how the FBI acted the last time this sort of thing came up I imagine anyone who made a 'nuisance' of themself by daring to tinker with/remove such a device would quickly find their life getting all sorts of 'interesting'.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          Christenson, 11 Oct 2018 @ 4:09pm

          Re: Re: Re: Just arguing it wrong

          Well, suppose someone finds the tracker, goes to court, and demands either the warrant or damages????
          More ways to make life interesting!

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 14 Oct 2018 @ 1:36am

        Re: Re: Just arguing it wrong

        Brings to mind a devious and spiteful way to deal with it - call in the tracker as a possible car-bomb detonator. That way the government is the one who destroys it, you can hold them liable for further damages and they are tarred as terrorist loose cannons.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    ECA (profile), 11 Oct 2018 @ 2:28pm

    LOTS of comments...

    but, the only persons responsible for the truck are the ones IN THE TRUCK..
    Or did they wait to see who they sold the Sugar to..
    ALSO, import Sugar has a Very high tax...$1 per pound..its a restricted market.

    WHY was DHS created? its not doing its job, chasing Drug traffic. THATS another dept.
    How many Agencies have been placed under DHS..over 40, if you didnt know...MOST of the federal gov.
    Part of this, also happens to be part of another THING going on...WITH TRAINS..they want to be able to Frisk every child that travels..

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]


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