Police Seize Gizmodo Editor’s Computers

Discussion in 'HardForum Tech News' started by HardOCP News, Apr 26, 2010.

  1. BaldHeadedDork

    BaldHeadedDork Gawd

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    It's not that difficult. Apple has filed a criminal complaint related to how Gizmodo came into possession of the iPhone, and all the DA knows is what Apple has told them.

    Apple's lawyers probably aren't stupid enough to make an obviously false police report, but there's a lot of gray area they can massage in an attempt to get a look at Chen's data and generally make his life miserable.
     
  2. rapid

    rapid Limp Gawd

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    this debacle could taint the final release of the next gen iphone.. wonder if Apple might drastically change it so as to not remind us too much in a years time
     
  3. _G_

    _G_ [H]ard|Gawd

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    Sounds like some local town cops trying to get in on a national story. I wonder if riaa sent some brown shirts down to check the contents of the servers and mp3 player? lol
     
  4. Ualdayan

    Ualdayan [H]ard|Gawd

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    If you try to return something to the owner, and the owner rebuffs you and ignores you I hardly consider that thievery.

    'He reached for a phone and called a lot of Apple numbers and tried to find someone who was at least willing to transfer his call to the right person, but no luck. No one took him seriously and all he got for his troubles was a ticket number.'

    Weeks later, Gizmodo got it for $5,000 in cash. At the time, we didn't know if it was the real thing or not. It didn't even get past the Apple logo screen.

    http://gizmodo.com/5520438/how-apple-lost-the-next-iphone
     
  5. Bohica69

    Bohica69 Gawd

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    Read the statute again.

    He actually did do what was required by law. He took possession of it, and since the owner was known, contacted them and said, "Hey I have this, how can I return it".

    There's NO requirement in the law that I see that says "If you find something in a bar you have to leave it with the bartender". Care to point that line out to me?

    IANAL but looks to me that the only problem was that he (the original finder) transfered it to Gizmodo. Gizmodo made Apple aware they had it, and said "send us an official letter and we'll send it back". After all they wanted to make sure it got back to the rightful owner.

    This is just an Apple strong arm tactic.
     
  6. gathagan

    gathagan Gawd

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    As was already posted, this would be the D.A.'s call, not the LAPD.
     
  7. Json23

    Json23 [H]ard|Gawd

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    They are gonna have to prove that whoever bought it, bought it knowing it was STOLEN and not found. If there is any doubt in the minds of the jury as to whether or not this is the case then they will have a hard time convicting them.
     
  8. OregonLAN

    OregonLAN 2[H]4U

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    If I had to guess, the item was stolen and Apple is trying to build a case against the person(s) responsible for stealing it. If the editor were being charged with posession of stolen property, he would have been taken in and booked with the crime.
     
  9. Zellio2010

    Zellio2010 Limp Gawd

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    No, this is apple's way of killing people in America like they kill their workers in China.
     
  10. heatlesssun

    heatlesssun [H]ard as it Gets

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    If Apple didn't want this it wouldn't be happening. I really don't if Steve picked up the phone and talked the DA down that he'd still waste time and resources on this, it's not like CA is flush with cash these days. I'm not defending the criminal behavior but honestly. It's a phone prototype, the police have better things to do with their time and money. At the very least Apple could probably say a few words and make it less of a big deal. Hell more people are stealing from their computers this very minute and causing more damage in a millisecond than the harm from this.

    But the Gizmodo dude is a dumbass. But maybe he's capitalized on this more than the trouble. Doesn't look like it.
     
  11. badcaps

    badcaps Gawd

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    What hasn't yet been mentioned in this thread is Gawker's letter to the Detective in charge, wherein they state that Chen is a journalist working from his home; they therefore cannot seize those materials with a mere search warrant and may be in violation of the law in doing so.

    That is the really juicy bit in the story.
     
  12. soulesschild

    soulesschild [H]ardness Supreme

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    This. I'm totally looking forward to see how this plays out.
     
  13. martinmsj

    martinmsj [H]ard|Gawd

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    There is quite an amount of fail in this thread as far as lack of reading.


    The search warrant to remove these computers was invalid under section 1524(g) of the California Penal Code.


    End of story. The police need to return all confiscated items.
     
  14. Crax

    Crax Limp Gawd

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    The first part was a joke. Nice catch!. Try reading the warrant next time. Modems are explicitly listed as are all cables and software/hardware documentation. I don't know how you aren't getting how overly broad this warrant is.
     
  15. InsanePerson

    InsanePerson Limp Gawd

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    It seems to me that a DA is not going to mobilize resources such as those employed here, and to the extreme that they did, in a situation like this where, a crime might, or might not have been committed, but the involved parties were working to resolve (last i read anyways)
    It seems much more likely that the DA was under pressure from legal request/threat
     
  16. krotch

    krotch [H]ardness Supreme

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    Except the law still doesn't define it as theft. If it does, show me where in that whole civil code that it states such. I sure didn't see it, neither did a search.
     
  17. SpeedyVV

    SpeedyVV [H]ardness Supreme

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    The Gizmodo dude is lucky he is not in texas.

    Kyle would have been legally able to come over and shoot him on the spot for being such a dumbass.

    I mean paying $5k for an Apple piece of crap.
     
  18. alg7_munif

    alg7_munif [H]ardness Supreme

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    Define the meaning of reasonable time to contact the owner. Is it reasonable if you don't give it your best to find the owner? I mean, you also have other things to do in your daily life. Do you need to take a leave just to find the owner or it is reasonable for you to wait until the weekend to find the owner?
     
  19. InsanePerson

    InsanePerson Limp Gawd

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    For which he probably made how much from the attention?
    Even if it wasnt a profit, how many more people know about Gizmodo then before
     
  20. defuseme2k

    defuseme2k [H]ard|Gawd

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    ahaha. Apple has to love this shit. Negative publicity? So what. Fuck with us, bad shit happens to you. Our idiots will buy whatever we sell, period. I have an iphone now, but I can promise I won't have another apple product, ever. Wow.
     
  21. Ranma

    Ranma Limp Gawd

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    And this is just the start of the police acting on behalf of big business. Expect more of this in the future as the US sadly continues down the path of Facism.
     
  22. Ualdayan

    Ualdayan [H]ard|Gawd

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    I've heard about that 'he deserved shooting' Texas loophole before as well.
     
  23. kuyaglen

    kuyaglen [H]ardForum Junkie

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    imo there are more important crimes than that of buying a hot phone, though the overall seriousness of the "big picture" is cause for such action.
     
  24. Nightrainsrt4

    Nightrainsrt4 Limp Gawd

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    The thing that bothers me the most is that we have laws that aren't expressed to the people. How can you have laws that aren't explained and made known to the people, then arrest/search/etc. There are laws that you can break that you couldn't possibly have known without seeking it out first. That seems retarded to me.
     
  25. digitalfreak

    digitalfreak Limp Gawd

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    Apparently you have problems with reading comprehension. Section 1524(g) only applies to newspaper, magazines, other periodicals, press associations or wireservices. Jizmodo is none of those things.
     
  26. Ualdayan

    Ualdayan [H]ard|Gawd

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    You must be describing yourself with the way you have to start every post with an insult.

    Not a single one of that phone had ever been sold before, there was no MSRP or general retail value. You can't use some fringe one off transaction anymore than a person can say 'Hey, this guy bought this celebrities toenail for $10k so that must mean all that celebrities toenails are worth 10k each!' to determine value.

    I also notice you totally ignore how wrong you were on the time frame of things and the illegality of the warrant.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 28, 2010
  27. arentol

    arentol 2[H]4U

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    The guy who found the phone is indeed a thief. By law after Apple failed to claim the property he was required to turn it in to the police. He didn't, and instead he sold it, which is a second criminal act, so he is definitely guilty of a crime.

    Whether Gizmodo and Chen committed a crime is a different matter. Receiving stolen property is a crime, but if you can show you knew who the owner was and purchased the property for the purpose of returning it to the owner then you won't be convicted. However, that is an affirmative defense, so the police and DA can still investigate the crime as if you were a regular suspect. Just like they often do in self-defense cases, which are also affirmative defense situations. So Chen and Gizmodo will likely walk on this because they contacted Apple almost immediately and returned the device. Apple might have a civil case, but nothing criminal will hold up.

    As for the lawyers argument that you can't seize a journalists computer. If Chen is the one that purchased the device from the thief then that is not going to hold up at all. He knowingly took part in a felony criminal act and there is no journalistic protection that lets you commit a felony and then not be investigated exactly as anyone else would be. He will ultimately walk free but unfortunately, thanks to his own voluntary actions, he is going to have to wade through some serious crap first.
     
  28. BaldHeadedDork

    BaldHeadedDork Gawd

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    I noticed that, too. My read is that there has been communication between the DA's office and Gawker in the days before the search warrant was issued. A working cop probably hasn't seen a lot of emails from search warrant subjects before the warrant is executed.
     
  29. FranklyShankly

    FranklyShankly [H]ard|Gawd

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    Maybe you're the one with reading comprehension problems.

    Because the COO of the company is trying to argue that the search warrant is illegal does not make it illegal. It is only illegal when a judge rules that it is so.
     
  30. FranklyShankly

    FranklyShankly [H]ard|Gawd

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    A high end smartphone is worth less than 100 dollars on what planet exactly?
     
  31. boss99

    boss99 2[H]4U

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    I'm smelling Guerilla Marketing.
     
  32. arentol

    arentol 2[H]4U

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    Your argument is BS and you know it.

    The fact that something has not been sold before does not affect its value, nor make it impossible to estimate its value. Any working iPhone is clearly worth $100 or more. A prototype of a new iPhone that is not yet in production is clearly worth even more than a new current iPhone. This is not debatable, and only a complete idiot could attempt to use the "I didn't know it was worth $100 or more" defense.

    Also before it was sold the guy who sold it publicly announced what it was, so he KNEW FOR A FACT that it was a 4G iPhone. Therefore he knew it was worth more than $100. Therefore he is a criminal. The train of logic in this case is simple, complete, and conclusive.
     
  33. Ualdayan

    Ualdayan [H]ard|Gawd

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  34. x3sphere

    x3sphere 2[H]4U

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    I'm not sure how Gizmodo can claim they didn't know the phone was a legit prototype before buying. The fact they paid $5k for it negates any plausible deniability. That's a hefty sum of money to pay for something that could have been a Chinese knockoff.
     
  35. ReVRiN

    ReVRiN [H]ard|Gawd

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    Booya... I just reread the thread and was thinking the same thing.
     
  36. MavericK

    MavericK Zero Cool

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    More like why you should never buy Apple products, ever again. :mad:
     
  37. SilverSliver

    SilverSliver Beat It To Deformation

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    How was it KNOWN ? The dumbshit engineered left it in a bar.
     
  38. Hallis

    Hallis [H]ardness Supreme

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    D.A. didn't kick the door in. LAPD did.
     
  39. FranklyShankly

    FranklyShankly [H]ard|Gawd

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