Friday, January 30, 2009

U.S. v. SDI Future Health, Inc., No. 07-10261 (1-27-09). Can corporate executives challenge police searches on corprorate premises where the executives did not have exclusive use? In other words, it is time for another 4th Amendment "test." This case was on an interlocutory appeal, involved a Medicare scam (double billings, billings for services not rendered, etc.). The 9th (O'Scannlain joined by Hawkins and McKeown) reviewed the district court's suppression order. The search warrant with sealed affidavit had a broad search of the corporate headquarters (rolodexes, calendars are two examples). On appeal, the government argued that the executives lacked standing. The 9th does remand on this issue and, in so doing, fashions a new test looking at the employee ownership interests in the property, whether it was in the immediate control of the employee, and privacy interests. The test came from the 10th Circuit's case, U.S. v. Anderson, 154 F.3d 1225 (10th Cir. 1992). The 9th also affirmed the suppression of some items as being swept in under a too broad category (the rolodexes, for example). The items should have had a connection to the offense, such as documents involving physicians, or billing.


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