Attorneys representing defendants accused of cybercrimes received another weapon in their arsenals after a recent Supreme Court decision, according to computer forensic hardware maker Voom Technologies.
The decision from the Supreme Court's latest term, Melendez-Diaz v. Massachusetts, held that the trial court's admission of the prosecution's certificates by laboratory analysts in a drug case was in error since it violated the defendant's Sixth Amendment right to confront his accusers.
The decision didn't limit itself to drug cases, nor did it restrict the scope of the ruling to any particular field of forensic analysts, according to Voom's release. Justice Scalia, delivering the controlling opinion of the Court, noted that "[t]he same is true of many of the other types of forensic evidence commonly used in criminal prosecutions," which leads Voom's CEO David Biessener to believe that the decision applies to computer forensic experts as well as drug lab analysts.
This means that defense attorneys can demand testimony from computer forensic experts at trial, and can challenge any lack of testimony on appeal. Going forward, defense attorneys will have new methods at their disposal to challenge cybercrime charges on behalf of their clients.