Friday, May 24, 2002

searching the mail

Should the customs office be allowed to open mail that goes across the border, without a warrant? That question was being debated in Washington, D.C., this week. The House has said yes:
a Customs officer may, subject to the provisions of this section, stop and search at the border, without a search warrant, mail of domestic origin transmitted for export by the United States Postal Service and foreign mail transiting the United States that is being imported or exported by the United States Postal Service. (from the Customs Border Security Act of 2002 )
This provision is part of a larger bill dealing with the Custom Office's budget, and it is possible that an amendment to the bill will remove that provision.

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