D.Minn.: Court won’t enjoin investigation after SW on ptf’s cell phone

Plaintiff can’t get access to search warrant papers yet because of an ongoing investigation. Second, the court won’t enjoin the use of the information from his seized telephone or order its return because of the ongoing investigation. Lindell v. United States, 2022 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 200225 (D. Minn. Nov. 3, 2022):

Plaintiffs Michael J. Lindell and MyPillow, Inc., allege in this case that federal agents violated their rights under the First, Fourth, and Fifth Amendments to the United States Constitution when—pursuant to a search warrant—they seized a cellphone from Lindell in the drive-through lane of a Hardee’s restaurant in Mankato, Minnesota, on September 13, 2022. Two motions require adjudication. First, under multiple constitutional and rule-based legal theories, Plaintiffs seek access to warrant-application materials the Government filed to secure the search warrant. Second, pursuant to Federal Rule of Criminal Procedure 41(g), Plaintiffs seek a preliminary injunction that would, if issued, require the Government to return the seized cellphone and prohibit the Government from using any information retrieved from the cellphone. Plaintiffs’ motion for access to the search-warrant materials will be denied because the Government has demonstrated a compelling interest in the ongoing criminal investigation that outweighs Plaintiffs’ right of access. Plaintiffs’ motion for a preliminary injunction will be denied because Plaintiffs have not met their burden to support the exercise of equitable powers to enjoin an ongoing criminal investigation and have otherwise failed to satisfy the showing necessary to justify such extraordinary relief.

Update: N.B.: I’ve read the pleadings and orders in almost every case revealed in the press involving the seized cell phones in the Jan. 6 investigation. Not one of the plaintiffs came close in their claims. This begs the question to me: Did the lawyers give candid advice “that this issue is obviously a loser. So save your money and don’t do it. You’ll fall on your face in court and the court of public opinion”? Or is litigation for an ulterior motive? Remember that the plaintiff in one of them was called a “constitutional lawyer” and his failed miserably, too. It took me 10 seconds to conclude that they would, not after a $100,000 fee.

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