Court: Border Patrol Must Have Reasonable Cause to Conduct Thorough Search of Electronic Devices

Steve Neavling

Border Patrol is prohibited from conducting a thorough search of an electronic device like a computer or cell phone unless there is reasonable suspicion of a crime, the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled Friday, the Inquisitr reports

But the ruling does not prevent Border Patrol from making cursory checks of electronic devices without reasonable suspicions.

The case involved a convicted sex offender whose laptop was seized at the US-Mexico border. After performing a comprehensive forensic audit, agents found child pornography, the Inquisitir reported.

Judges ruled that Border Patrol overreached its authority in that case.

“A person’s digital life ought not be hijacked simply by crossing a border,” the ruling reads.

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