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Appeal in Child Porn Case Addresses Military's Search & Seizure of Private's MP3 Player

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By FindLaw Staff on June 17, 2010 2:29 PM

Court Also Addresses Case Dealing with Evasion of Reporting Requirements

In US v. Rendon, No. 09-4687, the Fourth Circuit faced a challenge to a conviction of a private in the U.S. Army in a civilian court for child pornography, claiming that the search of defendant's MP3 player by the military while he was a private in the U.S. Army was unconstitutional.  The court affirmed the district court's denial of motion to suppress as evidence the fruits of the search conducted by the military, because defendant's MP3 player was inspected pursuant to a valid military inspection, and thus, contraband discovered during the course of that inspection could be seized and turned over to civilian authorities.   

US v. Peterson, No. 09-4166, concerned a conviction of defendant for structuring transactions to evade reporting requirements set forth in 31 U.S.C. section 5313(a).  In affirming the district court's imposition of a two-level enhancement pursuant to section 2S1.3(b)(2) of the sentencing guidelines to defendant's sentence, the court held that the district court did not err in determining that defendant's structuring offense was committed as part of a pattern of unlawful activity involving more than $100,000 in a twelve-month period, and as a result, the safe harbor of section 2S1.3(b) did not apply.   

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