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02 Mar 2016

Three reasons why Apple didn't have to unlock a phone Internet

The US government is demanding Apple unlock iPhones in about a dozen cases beside the San Bernardino one. In a strikingly similar case, Judge James Orenstein in Brooklyn rejected the government's request for three separate reasons. In the decision the judge refers several times to the San Bernardino case, and it is clear he expects this decision to be an important precedent for that one.

In June 2014 the government arrested Jun Feng in Queens NY on drug charges and confiscated his iPhone 5S. Over a year later, in July 2015 got a warrant to search the phone and found that it was locked. In October they filed a proposed order under the 1789 All Writs Act (AWA) to have Apple unlock the phone. It appears that Apple initially cooperated and suggested some of the language in the proposed order, but if so they changed their minds and opposed it.

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