Archive | Free Weev

Third Circuit Accepts One Brief, Rejects the Second

As a follow-up to yesterday’s post on the briefing in United States v. Auernheimer, the Third Circuit has now ruled: The Court accepted the government’s 120-page merits brief, but rejected the defense’s unopposed request to file an oversized reply brief in response. From the order: “Appellee’s motion for a word limit extension is granted. Appellant’s motion to file an oversized reply brief is denied. Appellant is directed to file an amended reply brief that complies with the word limitations of Fed R. App.P. 32(a)(7) within 10 days of the date of this order.” The good news is that this will get the case moving again. The bad news is that I have a lot of editing to do; expect very light (if not non-existent) blogging from me over the next 10 days. [...]

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Update on United States v. Auernheimer

Some readers have asked me about the oral argument schedule in United States v. Auernheimer, the Third Circuit appeal I am working on pro bono involving charges under the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act. Unfortunately, the case is somewhat stuck right now. Although all the briefs have been filed, the Third Circuit has yet to rule on the Government’s August 5th motion to file an oversized brief. Until the Court rules, the briefing schedule is stayed and the case isn’t moving forward. (The two sides agreed on a briefing schedule and filed briefs even though the briefing schedule was stayed, so we’re just waiting on a ruling.) My co-counsel and I today filed this letter again requesting the Third Circuit to lift the stay and allow the briefs, but until the Court rules the case is in a bit of a holding pattern. [...]

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Reply Brief Filed in United States v. Auernheimer

Readers who are following the Weev case, aka United States v. Auernheimer, the Third Circuit appeal I am litigating pro bono, might be interested to know that we filed our reply brief today. You can read the reply brief here.

If you’re interested in reading the rest of the briefs, our opening brief is here, and the govermnment’s brief is here. You can read the four amicus briefs filed in support of Auernheimer here. [...]

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Open Thread on the Government’s Brief in United States v. Auernheimer

Yesterday I provided a link to the government’s merits brief in United States v. Auernheimer, the computer crime case involving the CFAA, the identity theft statute, and the scope of venue for criminal cases. When I posted the link to the defense merits brief back in July, there was a long comment thread debating the merits of the argument. In light of that, I thought I would start an open thread inviting reader responses to the arguments made in the government’s brief. So comment away, if you’re interested. Responses from readers who have actually read the brief — or better yet, both briefs — are especially welcome. [...]

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Government Files 118-page Merits Brief in United States v. Auernheimer

I’ve blogged a few times about the case of United States v. Auernheimer, the computer crime case pending before the Third Circuit in which I am pro bono counsel for the defendant (along with EFF, Marcia Hofmann, and trial counsel Tor Ekeland). We filed our merits brief in July, and it is available here. On Friday afternoon, the United States filed its merits brief, which you can read here. If you plan to read the government’s brief, be sure to block off some extra time: The government’s brief is 26,495 words, about 90% longer than the Federal Rules of Appellate Procedure permit. [...]

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Amicus Briefs in United States v. Auernheimer

Three Four amicus briefs have been filed in support of the appellant in United States v. Auernheimer, the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act case I have blogged about (and for which I am co-counsel for the appellant). Here they are:

1. National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (Attorneys: Counsel from Keker & Van Nest)

2. Mozilla Foundation, Computer Scientists, Security and Privacy Experts (Attorney: Jennifer Granick)

3. Thirteen Professional Security Researchers (Attorney: Alex Muentz)

4. Digital Media Law Project (Attorney: Kit Walsh)

Also, this updated opening brief for the appellant was filed on July 2 to correct some formatting issues. (All the substance is exactly the same.)

UPDATE: My apologies that I accidentally overlooked the fourth amicus brief that was filed; I have now added it. [...]

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Appellant’s Brief Filed in United States v. Auernheimer

Back in March, I blogged about my agreeing to work pro bono on a Third Circuit appeal, United States v. Auernheimer, that raises several critical questions about the scope of the computer crime laws. I spent part of May and most of the last month working on the brief, and I’m happy to say it was filed just a few moments ago.

You can read the brief here. My co-counsel on the brief are Hanni Fakhoury of the EFF, Marcia Hofmann, Tor Ekelend, and Mark Jaffe. I tend to think that briefs should speak for themselves, so I don’t plan to say a lot about it here. But I do think this case raises several foundational questions about the scope of the computer crime laws. At bottom, the case is about the freedom to surf the web. But once you get into the details, it’s also about several kinds of prosecutorial overreach: Circular theories that try to turn misdemeanors into felonies; an astonishing view of venue that would allow any AUSA anywhere to bring charges in their district for crimes having nothing to do with their district; and punitive sentences based largely on smoke and mirrors. And it’s all in there in a single case. That’s how I look at it, at least. As always, YMMV. Anyway, I invite readers to weigh on the case and the brief in the comment threads. [...]

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