Former CIA and US National Security Agency (NSA) contractor Edward Snowden has applauded the decision of the Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit based in Richmond (Virginia, USA), which supported the activists through a ruling issued this Thursday against the Baltimore Police Department (Maryland) by declaring its program unconstitutional Air Research (AIR).
“We have a reasonable expectation that our daily movements will not be persistently monitored, and Baltimore violated it,” Snowden wrote on his account. Twitter, calling the court decision “the most significant Fourth Amendment victory in a long time” that “will have a national impact” and possibly international as well.
This dystopian program never should have been permitted to get off the ground.Invasive technologies like these have no place in our cities. pic.twitter.com/RsNUb3NaSz
– the ACLU (@ACLU) June 24, 2021
The majority of the judges concluded that the AIR program violates that reasonable expectation of privacy because it “uses aerial photography to track movements related to serious crimes “with an accuracy that exceeds” even that of GPS data and cellular service location information. “
“Given that the AIR program allows the Police to deduce about the totality of the movements of individuals, we maintain that access to the program’s data is a record, and its operation without court order violates the Fourth Amendment, the court ruled, after adding that “allowing the Police to exercise this power without control is anathema to the values enshrined” in the aforementioned amendment to the Constitution, which guarantees the right to privacy, protecting from searches and apprehensions. arbitrary.
The ruling overturns the earlier decision of a federal district judge and prevents Baltimore from using the data obtained through the surveillance program for its ongoing criminal investigations or prosecutions.