Scoon’s attorneys say no to ‘blanket access’ to devices seized by police

The content originally appeared on: Trinidad and Tobago Newsday

ATTORNEYS for businessman Adrian Scoon say they are unwilling to give blanket access to his electronic devices “for police to conduct a roving inquiry into private information and devices.”

Scoon is being investigated for an alleged breach of public health regulations by hosting a brunch on his Ocean Pelican vessel on Boxing Day,

In a letter to acting Commissioner McDonald Jacob on Friday, attorney Kiel Taklalsingh referred to a police media briefing earlier in the day at which it was said investigators had obtained a warrant to examine Scoon’s electronic devices.

Taklalsingh said his client remained willing to assist in the investigation and provide information reasonably required.

However, he said, “You have not specified any specific document or information which you require and therefore we are unwilling to simply give you passwords to do as you wish.

“We demand that the content of this letter be placed before the judicial officer (when) you are attempting to procure yet another warrant. We further request the preservation of all electronic devices.”

This week, Scoon filed a judicial review claim challenging the warrants police used to search his home and office for information relating to the alleged breach of the public health regulations.

In it, he asked for an undertaking by police not to enter the devices to retrieve information. Police took two iPhones, two Macbook laptops and a flash drive while searching his Maraval home and Queen’s Park West office on January 5.

Taklalsingh reminded that the warrant authorising the police was under challenge in the court, which included a challenge to determine whether the warrant could authorise extracting information from the seized devices.

He said in the matter before the court, his client has argued there was insufficient material to satisfy the justice of the peace that reasonable grounds existed to grant a warrant and that the Summary Courts Act did not allow a warrant for extractimg data.

Scoon, the son of Trade and Industry Minister Paula Gopee-Scoon, has insisted he was given permission to operate the vessel as a floating restaurant and complied with safe-zone protocols.

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