Florida Cybercrime Attorney has been researching sanctions for destruction of evidence, also known as Spoliation. The Sanctions: Defendant to Pay Attorneys’ Fees or Serve Two Years Imprisonment for “Egregious” Discovery Misconduct.
The plaintiff sought sanctions arising out of the defendants’ intentional spoliation of evidence and other litigation misconduct in this intellectual property litigation. There were eight preservation issues including: use of wiping software; failure to implement litigation hold; failure to preserve an external hard drive; failure to preserve files and e-mails notwithstanding plaintiff’s demands and several court orders.
The Judge found through four years of discovery, the defendant had actual knowledge of his duty to preserve, “yet delayed and misrepresented the completeness of the ESI [Electronically Stored Information] production and deleted, destroyed and otherwise failed to preserve evidence.” The Judge then found the destruction “collectively constitute[d] the single most egregious example of spoliation [that he has] encountered in any case & in nearly fourteen years on the bench.”
The sanctions: Defendant to be imprisoned for up to two years, or until he paid the attorneys’ fees and costs estimated to be a “significant amount.”
Victor Stanley, Inc. v. Creative Pipe, Inc., 2010 WL 3703696 (D. Md. Sept. 9, 2010)
Tampa Federal Criminal Defense Attorney, Lawyer W.F. ”Casey” Ebsary, Jr. , noted a recent case decided on the scope of search warrants issued in computer cases. Wired magazine noted:
“A divided 11-judge federal appeals court panel has dramatically narrowed the government’s search-and-seizure powers in the digital age, ruling Wednesday that federal prosecutors went too far when seizing 104 professional baseball players’ drug results when they had a warrant for just 10.”
The Court suggested that during a computer’s hard drive search, data should be culled to include the specific data described in the search warrant. The entire hard drive should not be subject to a wholesale review. When the entire drive is seized, an independent third party should review the data. The information should be limited by the Court. The term “filter teams” has been used to refer to the third party who review data seized by a search warrant.
The Appeals Court stated that the judge reviewing the search warrant application should “deny the warrant altogether” if the government does not agree to a third-party review in cases where data will be searched.
Has your data been the subject of a Search Warrant? We can help. Call Toll Free 1-877-793-9290 .
Computer Search Warrant Tampa – Overbroad