Florida Sheriff says “I’ll lock the rascal up” if Apple doesnt help authorities in crypto battle
The Apple vs FBI court battle is growing more and more acrimonious with a Florida sheriff promising to arrest Apple CEO, Tim Cook, if Apple resisted government’s efforts to create backdoor in iPhone. Polk County Sheriff, Grady Judd said he wouldnt hesitate to throw Cook behind bars if a case similar to San Bernardino shooting happens in his jurisdiction.
The Apple vs FBI fight came to fore when an US court ordered Apple to unlock the San Bernardino shooter’s iPhone 5c under the All Writs Act, an obscure 18th-century statute. The court ordered Apple to develop ways for the FBI to access the shooter’s iPhone. Apple has contested the order saying that such hack or backdoor could create an unhealthy precedence and authorities could force Apple to bake in backdoors in all its products and snoop on its users.
Speaking at a press conference Wednesday that was published by FOX 13, Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd described a recent murder case that his office had worked on. Judd said that the murder suspects took photos of their victim on their smartphones, but then later gave detectives the passcodes to unlock their phones.
However, when Judd was asked about Apple’s refusal to help create a custom-firmware that would allow the FBI to “brute-force” the seized iPhone 5C from San Bernardino, the sheriff did not mince words.
“You cannot create a business model to go, ‘We’re not paying attention to the federal judge or the state judge. You see, we’re above the law,'” Judd said. “The CEO of Apple needs to know he’s not above the law, and neither is anybody else in the United States.”
He made it clear that if a similar case happened in his jurisdiction in future where Apple resisted court’s orders, it may result in Cook being put behind bars, presumably under a contempt of court order.
“But believe you me, if I get a toehold in this county and I can get the state attorney’s office to prosecute, and a judge to back us up with it, I’ll lock the rascal up,” Judd concluded.