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Supreme Court Won't Hear Body-Scanner Appeal 170

Posted by samzenpus
from the scan-me dept.
stevegee58 writes "After a long string of legal setbacks, the case brought by Jonathan Corbett challenging TSA's use of full body scanners and enhanced pat-downs has come to an end. Today the Supreme Court declined to hear the case, so current TSA practices will stand. The TSA started allowing the use of the advanced imaging technology in October 2010."
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Supreme Court Won't Hear Body-Scanner Appeal

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  • well, (Score:5, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday October 01, 2012 @01:12PM (#41515141)

    god damn it!

  • by Mashiki (184564) <mashiki&gmail,com> on Monday October 01, 2012 @01:17PM (#41515227) Homepage

    Via drudge: [drudgereport.com]
    http://www.contracostatimes.com/politics-government/ci_21672132/supreme-court-wont-hear-cases-body-scanners-gay?source=rss [contracostatimes.com]
      The Supreme Court won't hear a Michigan man's attempt to challenge the use of full body scanners at airports.

    The high court on Monday refused to hear an appeal by Jonathan Corbett, who wanted to challenge the Transportation Security Administration's use of full body scanners and/or enhanced pat downs at airport security lines. Federal courts in Florida refused to hear his lawsuit, saying it could only be filed with the federal appeals court in Washington, D.C. The 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals upheld the dismissal, and the Supreme Court refused to reopen the case.

    The TSA started allowing the use of the advanced imaging technology in October 2010.

  • Re:well, (Score:3, Informative)

    by pdabbadabba (720526) on Monday October 01, 2012 @01:34PM (#41515461) Homepage

    From what I've read, there's really nothing to see here. The original suit was dismissed because it was filed in the wrong court. It was filed in FL district court when the law requires that it be brought before the DC Circuit or the circuit in which he resides (he resides in Michigan). But instead of just bringing his suit in the correct court, he has simply appealed the dismissal all the way up to the supreme court. Of course SCOTUS didn't take it; the lower courts were obviously correct.

  • by pdabbadabba (720526) on Monday October 01, 2012 @01:40PM (#41515551) Homepage

    You are correct. There is nothing more to it than that. The case number (on appeal to the 11th Circuit, at least) appears to be 11-cv-12426. Here is the 11th Circuit's opinion itself which makes things pretty clear: http://law.justia.com/cases/federal/appellate-courts/ca11/11-12426/11-12426-2012-02-27.html [justia.com]

  • by Yakasha (42321) on Monday October 01, 2012 @01:44PM (#41515589) Homepage

    I still have the same question as Elbart. There isn't anything that says why they declined to hear the case?

    SCOTUS gets 1000s of cases every year. They can't review them all. So, they defer to the lower courts unless the lower courts can't figure it out for themselves (i.e., different circuits give conflicting rulings).

    For SCOTUS to take this, most likely multiple suits need to be filed in different districts and at least 2 of them need to hear the case and rule differently.

    The issue is effectively DOA in the courts. But lucky for us, November 6th is approaching fairly rapidly. Fix it there.

    Since Obama clearly supports the Fed's illegal activities, and Romney no doubt does too, you're left with 1 option: vote 3rd party.

    3rd party is not a wasted vote. Federal election laws revolve around a party gaining 5% of the popular vote in the previous election. We only recognize two parties because only those two parties have ever had 5% of the votes!

    If you're curious, Ross Perot picked up 18% in 1992, but officially ran as an Independent, preventing his Reform party from benefiting in 1996.

  • by OverTheGeicoE (1743174) on Monday October 01, 2012 @01:57PM (#41515789) Journal

    The plaintiff was hoping to get a jury trial in the district court [wordpress.com]. All suits regarding TSA in the DC circuit court go straight to appeals, meaning no jury trial is possible there. This is the same court that has been so deferential to DHS in the EPIC suit on the same topic. The plaintiff seemed to think a jury would be more receptive to his arguments.

    Is another suit in the DC court worth the trouble? If not, then Mr. Corbett has been about as effective as Jesse Ventura was in his suit [huffingtonpost.com].

  • Re:well, (Score:5, Informative)

    by tsaoutofourpants (2615595) on Monday October 01, 2012 @02:06PM (#41515905)
    Hello, filer of the lawsuit here. There's perhaps a little bit more to read than what you've read... the first page of my SCOTUS petition or 11th Circuit appellate brief would have cleared things up. :) The brief summary is that my lawsuit was filed in District Court quite intentionally: District Court is the only federal court that has a trial by jury, as well as discovery and witnesses as-of-right. After filing, the TSA invoked a law that was not designed to send challenges to agency "orders" to the US Court of Appeals. The idea behind the law is that some administrative agencies have proceedings with administrative law judges that legitimately should be challenged in the appeals courts. For example, if you try to bring a knife on a plane, the TSA has administrative law judges to assess a civil penalty against you, and you can appeal that decision to the appeals court. However, the TSA has now successfully argued that ANYTHING THEY WRITE DOWN CONSTITUTES AN "ORDER" THAT CANNOT BE THE SUBJECT OF A JURY TRIAL. Think about that for a second: the gatekeepers of our constitutional rights are supposed to be *the people*. Instead, it is now a group of men that are appointed by the President, who happens to be the guy who appoints the head of the TSA who started this mess. My fight against the TSA will continue on in the appeals court, which is the only good news here. You may read more at: http://tsaoutofourpants.wordpress.com/2012/10/01/supreme-court-declines-to-consider-whether-nude-body-scanners-deserve-a-trial/ [wordpress.com]
  • by tsaoutofourpants (2615595) on Monday October 01, 2012 @02:11PM (#41515967)
    > Is another suit in the DC court worth the trouble? I give that an emphatic, "hell yes." --Mr. Corbett :)
  • Re:well, (Score:5, Informative)

    by pdabbadabba (720526) on Monday October 01, 2012 @02:23PM (#41516117) Homepage

    Hi there, thanks for replying. I am a lawyer, so I should probably refrain from commenting on the merits of your case too specifically for fear of accidentally giving "legal advice."

    I'll just say/ask these few things:

    1) It remains the case that the matter on appeal to the Supreme Court was the jurisdictional question, not the merits of your complaint (and the complaints of many others) against the TSA.

    2) Regardless of what court you brought suit in, it was always going to be a judge who resolved legal questions like, say, whether TSA's procedures were unconstitutional. A jury would only be tasked with factual questions like figuring out, if it were disputed, what TSA's procedures actually were.

    3) Do you have plans to refile in the 6th or DC Circuit?

    4) Good luck on your lawsuit.

    (It goes without saying, but I'll say it anyway: I am a lawyer, but I am not your lawyer. I know not nearly enough about you or your case to provide you advice that you could rely on. I am also not admitted to the bar in your jurisdiction so I couldn't be your lawyer even if I wanted to.)

  • by Aryden (1872756) on Monday October 01, 2012 @02:31PM (#41516203)

    Executive branch creates laws

    Civics 101: Legislative branch creates laws. Executive branch enforces laws. Except where executive orders are in play.

  • Re:well, (Score:5, Informative)

    by tsaoutofourpants (2615595) on Monday October 01, 2012 @02:32PM (#41516225)
    Thank you, and you're quite welcome! There's a donate button on my blog: http://tsaoutofourpants.wordpress.com/ [wordpress.com] I'm considering trying Kickstarter/Indygogo, but for now, just PayPal. :) --Jon
  • Re:well, (Score:5, Informative)

    by tsaoutofourpants (2615595) on Monday October 01, 2012 @02:34PM (#41516263)
    0) It's ok... I don't accept legal advice from strangers anyway. ;) 1) Yes. 2) Yes, but there are many questions of fact. For example, are the scanners effective (since effectiveness is a part of the balancing test in deciding if a search is reasonable)? See my video on that: http://tsaoutofourpants.wordpress.com/2012/03/06/1b-of-nude-body-scanners-made-worthless-by-blog-how-anyone-can-get-anything-past-the-tsas-nude-body-scanners/ [wordpress.com] 3) 11th Circuit. The wires have mistakenly reported me as a Michigan resident since I used a Michigan mailing address on court documents. I live in Miami Beach, FL. 4) Thank you. :)
  • Re:well, (Score:5, Informative)

    by pdabbadabba (720526) on Monday October 01, 2012 @02:45PM (#41516413) Homepage

    Ah. I just answered my own question (or, rather, the 11th circuit did):

    Finally, under 28 U.S.C. 2347, we may: (1) remand a proceeding to an agency to hold a hearing where one is required by law, (2) transfer certain cases to a district court, or (3) order an agency to take additional evidence and counterevidence. Id. 2347(b)(1), (3), (c).

  • by tsaoutofourpants (2615595) on Monday October 01, 2012 @03:01PM (#41516605)
    Please read http://yro.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3156341&cid=41515905 [slashdot.org] -- not a fuckup, but an intentional decision. I am pro se, although about a dozen members of state bars, including Jesse Ventura's awesome legal team, made the same decision in their similar suits.
  • Re:well, (Score:5, Informative)

    by tsaoutofourpants (2615595) on Monday October 01, 2012 @03:33PM (#41517065)
    Indeed, although the TSA will argue that that particular law doesn't apply to orders under s. 46110. Stay tuned for that fight.

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