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Media Alerts - United States v. Blake-11th Circuit
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September 27, 2017
  United States v. Blake-11th Circuit
Headline: Eleventh Circuit holds that an order to bypass security features of IPad was within the authority granted by the All Writs Act and warrants for Facebook while overbroad, fall within the good faith exception.

Area of Law: Criminal Law

Issue: Whether an order to bypass security features of IPad was within the authority granted by the All Writs Act and whether warrants for Facebook were overbroad requiring suppression of evidence.

Extended Summary: The Federal Bureau of Investigation ("FBI") arrested and charged Appellants, Dontavious Blake ("Blake") and Tara Jo Moore ("Moore") with crimes related to sex trafficking. The FBI obtained search warrants for Moore's Facebook and Microsoft accounts. The Facebook warrants were not limited to specific data or to a specific timeframe. The Microsoft warrant was limited to emails linked to the sex trafficking charges. The FBI also obtained an order ("bypass order") issued under the All Writs Act requiring that Apple bypass the security measures of an IPad recovered during a search of Blake and Moore's home. Blake and Moore were convicted after the district court denied their motions to suppress the evidence gathered from Facebook, Microsoft and the IPad. On appeal, the Eleventh Circuit noted that the scope of the Facebook warrants could and should have been limited. In addressing the particularity requirement of the Fourth Amendment, the court determined that even if the warrants were overly broad, they were supported by probable cause and the "good-faith" exception would apply. The court also held that the Microsoft warrant was valid because it was supported by probable cause and limited in scope to emails that had the potential to contain incriminating evidence. The Eleventh Circuit declined to determine if Moore and Blake had the prudential standing to contest the bypass order, but held that the bypass order did not exceed the district court's authority under the All Writs Act because all of the necessary requirements were met. The court found no error with the district court's rulings regarding the other issues raised on appeal. Accordingly, the Eleventh Circuit affirmed.

To view the full opinion:

Panel: Carnes, Chief Judge; Fay, Circuit Judge, and Parker (United States Circuit Judge for the Second Circuit, sitting by designation)


Date of Issued Opinion: August 21, 2017

Docket Number: 15-13395

Decided: Affirmed.

Case Alert Authors: Gabrielle F. McCabe, Franklin Sandrea-Rivero, and Peter Abraham-Orejuela


Author of Opinion: Carnes, Chief Judge.

    Posted By: Gary Kravitz @ 09/27/2017 03:32 PM     11th Circuit  

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