Indefinite prison for suspect who won’t provide encryption key

Won’t De-crypt Data? UNLIMITED Prison Time For You

DecryptCan a man be given unlim­ited prison time without being convicted of a crime? I know that a child pornog­ra­pher is about the least sympa­thetic kind of person, half a step removed from a child moles­ter or pedophile.

But you need to set that natural prejudice aside and look at the core issue at hand: Can the government throw someone in prison for an INDEFINITE period without any conviction for refusing to provide self incriminating evidence?

Judges can, and do.

Ars Technica

US federal prosecutors urged a federal appeals court late Monday to keep a child-porn suspect behind bars—where he already has been for seven months—until he unlocks two hard drives that the government claims contains kid smut.

The suspect, a Philadel­phia police sergeant relieved of his duties, has refused to unlock two hard drives and has been in jail ever since a judge ordered him to do so seven months ago—and after finding him in contempt of court. The defendant can remain locked up until a judge lifts the contempt order.

The government said Monday he should remain jailed indefinitely until he complies. The authorities also said that it’s not a violation of the man’s Fifth Amendment right against compelled self incrimination because it’s a “foregone conclusion” that illegal porn is on the drives, and that he is only being asked to unlock the drives, not divulge their passcodes.

Tar and feathers applied to constitution breaking judges every so often might disincentivize judges from ignoring the constitution in the first place.