(FreedomBeacon.com)- Defense attorneys are arguing that the FBI using general warrants to pick up on private locations on thousands of people’s devices who were on the Capitol on January 6 devices was a violation of the Fourth Amendment, according to The Epoch Times. The warrants allegedly allowed an illegal four-acre dragnet to issue criminal charges without probable cause.
After the Capitol riot on January 6, the FBI issued general warrants to Google and telecommunication companies like AT&T. The warrants were intended to determine who was on or around the premises on January 6.
Defense attorneys are arguing that general warrants are unlike the common uses of search warrants, which are reportedly served to specific people for specified circumstances. By contrast, general warrants seek the identity of defendants first and charge them with crimes at a later date.
Rebecca Fish, an assistant public defender who represents Jan. 6 defendant David Charles Rhine, wrote that the geofence warrant authorized by the FBI collected an “alarming breadth of personal data.” She argued that it violated the Fourth Amendment and asked U.S. District Judge Rudolph Contreras to suppress the location-history evidence brought forth by these warrants.
Google had reportedly run a query on tens of millions of users who kept their location history enabled in order to track them down. Fish claims that based on Google figures, the query had to be run against more than 500 million user accounts and generated a list of “5,723 unique devices” that could have been in the area on that day.
Google reportedly tracks a user’s location using GPS satellites, WiFi networks, Bluetooth beacons, and cell towers. They also record a user’s location every two minutes, whether or not the phone is in use.
Tom Fitton, president of Judicial Watch, says that these dragnet warrants are violations of the First Amendment because much of the land that people were on was accessible to the public.