Vermont case pits Fifth Amendment vs. child porn probe
Associated Press - February 7, 2008 2:05 PM ET
BURLINGTON, Vt. (AP) - Experts in online privacy say they're keeping an eye on a criminal case in Vermont in which a New Hampshire man allegedly caught with child pornography in his laptop computer is being pressed to provide his password so investigators can see what's in the computer.
Sebastien Boucher, of Derry, New Hampshire, was arrested in December 2006 as he tried to enter the United States at Derby Line and a border agent looked in his laptop.
Authorities say they found files containing disturbing child pornography and seized the laptop. When they later tried to access the computer, they couldn't get in because it was encrypted and they didn't have the password.
A grand jury subpoenaed Boucher to force him to reveal the password, but he balked and a federal magistrate in Burlington upheld his right to do so, saying that if he were forced to give it up, it could violate his Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination.
He has already been caught, so how can this be self incrimination if they already know it's in there? That is like refusing to give the cops your car keys when they can plainly see a pot plant in your car. Don't they have computer geeks to just hack the thing?
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