Where to Prosecute Cybercrimes

By: Jacob T. Wall

Selecting the appropriate venue for a criminal trial has been a matter of constitutional concern since the founding of the country. The issue is thought to be essential to the fair administration of justice and thus public confidence in the criminal justice system. Constitutionally, crimes must be prosecuted in the states and districts in which they were committed. However, the rise of cybercrime has complicated the venue inquiry: cyberspace, the domain of cybercrime, and physical space have become increasingly decoupled. Consequently, under America’s primary but dated cybercrime law, the ideal location for a trial may not be a constitutionally proper venue. This Note explores several possible approaches to permitting cybercrime trials to take place in the locations where they belong, including through an old but recently revisited judicially-created test for venue and through possible legislative reform.
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Cite: 17 Duke L. & Tech. Rev. 146

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