Often, government investigators and prosecutors will attempt to gather evidence from third-parties, such as relatives, employers, internet service providers, cloud computing companies and email hosting operations. Investigators from the FBI and other federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies will use a number of procedural vehicles to seek this evidence. This might include grand jury subpoenas or Stored Communication Act Warrants. When learning of these warrants, it is key that a recipient immediately contract competent legal counsel to protect the interests of the third-party. This is important so that the third-party can limit the dangers associated with broad fishing expeditions, help protect the privacy of other customers, vendors, or employees, and minimize the cost associated with compliance and equipment seizures. At Harvey & Binnall, we are proud to represent clients in these investigations.
Sometimes, these warrants and subpoenas will include gag-orders, that prohibit the third-party from communicating with others about the specific requests. These orders can often be challenged in court for violating the third-party’s freedom of speech rights.
We will work with investigators and prosecutors when subpoenas or warrants are received to best protect our client’s interests and values in complying with or resisting these investigations.