United States v. Molina-Isidoro

Brief of Amici Curiae Electronic Frontier Foundation, Asian Americans Advancing Justice-Asian Law Caucus, Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), CAIR California, CAIR Florida, CAIR New York, CAIR Ohio, and the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers in Support of Defendant-Appellant.

Brief filed: 08/07/2017


United States v. Molina-Isidoro

5th Circuit Court of Appeals; Case No. 17-50070

Prior Decision

Decision below 2016 WL 8138926 (W.D. Tex. Oct. 7, 2016).


Digital devices contain and access vast amounts of highly personal information. The border search exception is narrow. All border searches of digital devices, whether "manual" or "forensic," are highly intrusive of personal privacy and are thus "non-routine." A probable cause warrant should be required for boarder searches of data stored or accessible on digital devices. A probable cause warrant should be required given the highly personal information stored and accessible on digital devices. A probable cause warrant should be required because searching digital data is not tethered to the narrow purposes of the Border Search Exception.

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Mitchell L. Stoltz, Sophia Cope, and Adam Schwartz, Electronic Frontier Foundation, San Francisco, CA; Nicole DeBorde, NACDL, Houston, TX; Cynthia Orr, NACDL, San Antonio, TX; and Michelle Simpson Tuegel, NACDL, Waco, TX.