BILL ANALYSIS                                                                                                                                                                                                    Ó


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                                    THIRD READING

          Bill No:  SB 955
          Author:   Mitchell (D) and Lieu (D), et al.
          Amended:  As introduced
          Vote:     21

           SENATE PUBLIC SAFETY COMMITTEE  :  7-0, 4/8/14
          AYES:  Hancock, Anderson, De León, Knight, Liu, Mitchell,  

           SENATE APPROPRIATIONS COMMITTEE  :  7-0, 5/23/14
          AYES:  De León, Walters, Gaines, Hill, Lara, Padilla, Steinberg

           SUBJECT  :    Interception of electronic communications

           SOURCE  :     County of Los Angeles

           DIGEST  :    This bill adds human trafficking to the list of  
          offenses for which interception of electronic communications may  
          be ordered, as specified; and extends the sunset on the  
          provisions governing the interception of electronic  
          communications from January 1, 2015, to January 1, 2020.

           ANALYSIS  :    

          Existing law:

          1. Authorizes the Attorney General (AG), Chief Deputy AG, Chief  
             Assistant AG, District Attorney (DA) or the DA's designee to  
             apply to the presiding judge of the superior court for an  
             order authorizing the interception of wire or electronic  


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             communications under specified circumstances.  

          2. Provides that the court may grant oral approval for an  
             emergency interception of wire, electronic pager or  
             electronic cellular telephone communications without an order  
             as specified.  Approval for an oral interception shall be  
             conditioned upon filing with the court, within 48 hours of  
             the oral approval, a written application for an order.   
             Approval of the ex parte order shall be conditioned upon  
             filing with the judge within 48 hours of the oral approval. 

          3. Specifies the crimes for which an interception order may be  
             sought:  murder, kidnapping, bombing, criminal gangs, and  
             possession for sale, sale, transportation, or manufacturing  
             of more than three pounds of cocaine, heroin, PCP,  
             methamphetamine or its precursors, possession of a  
             destructive device, weapons of mass destruction or restricted  
             biological agents.  

          4. Provides that the provisions governing wiretap sunsets on  
             January 1, 2015.

          This bill:

          1. Adds "human trafficking" to the crimes for which an  
             interception order may be sought.

          2. Extends the sunset on provisions governing electronic  
             interceptions from January 1, 2015, to January 1, 2020.

           Prior Legislation
          AB 569 (Portantino, Chapter 391, Statutes of 2007) extended the  
          provisions authorizing the use of wiretaps by law enforcement to  
          January 1, 2012.

          SB 1428 (Pavley, Chapter 707, Statutes of 2010) expanded the  
          scope of wiretapping provisions to include the interception of  
          modern types of electronic communications.  The bill also  
          proposed to extend the sunset on wiretap provisions to January  
          1, 2014, however, the provision was amended out of the chaptered  
          version of the bill.

          SB 61 (Pavley, Chapter 663, Statutes of 2011) extended the  



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          sunset on wiretap provisions to January 1, 2015.

           FISCAL EFFECT  :    Appropriation:  No   Fiscal Com.:  Yes    
          Local:  No

          According to the Senate Appropriations Committee:

           Increased and ongoing significant state costs (General Fund)  
            potentially in the millions of dollars, to the extent  
            expanding and continuing the current authorization for  
            electronic interceptions leads to additional state prison  

           Major ongoing non-reimbursable local law enforcement costs as  
            a result of continuing electronic interception authorization,  
            in the range of $31 million, according to the self-reported  
            personnel and resources costs from the counties reported to  
            the DOJ for 2012.  (Costs related to extending electronic  
            interception authorization are likely offset to a degree by  
            related savings as a result of more efficient law enforcement  

           Non-reimbursable local law enforcement costs, offset to a  
            degree by fine revenue, for violations of the electronic  
            interception statutes, which are punishable by a fine not  
            exceeding $2,500, imprisonment in the county jail for up to  
            one year, or by imprisonment pursuant to subdivision (h) of  
            Section 1170 of the Penal Code, or by both the fine and  

           Potential ongoing state law enforcement costs to the DOJ for  
            its electronic interception efforts.

           Minor annual costs to the DOJ, likely less than $50,000  
            (General Fund) for the detailed annual report.

           SUPPORT  :   (Verified  5/23/14)

          County of Los Angeles (source)



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          Alameda County District Attorney
          California Alliance of Child and Family Services
          California State Sheriffs' Association
          City of Long Beach
          Coalition to Abolish Slavery and Trafficking
          Los Angeles County District Attorney

           OPPOSITION  :    (Verified  5/23/14)

          American Civil Liberties Union
          California Attorneys for Criminal Justice

           ARGUMENTS IN SUPPORT  :    The California State Sheriffs'  
          Association supports this bill stating, "Given the serious  
          nature of human trafficking and its recent growth in California,  
          it makes sense to allow law enforcement to use this highly  
          effective tool to prevent and stop it.  The bill would retain  
          judicial authority over wiretap requests and make a modest yet  
          meaningful expansion of this important statute."

           ARGUMENTS IN OPPOSITION  :    The ACLU opposes this bill stating,  
          "The ACLU has consistently opposed expansion of the state's  
          wiretap law.  Our objections are based on the fact that  
          wiretapping violates basic privacy rights.  A wiretap, because  
          it picks up both sides of all communications made by all persons  
          using wire or electronic communications under surveillance, by  
          definition constitutes a general search - committed not only  
          against the person under suspicion but against countless other  
          persons connected with the suspect only remotely or not at all."  

          JG:d  5/23/14   Senate Floor Analyses 

                           SUPPORT/OPPOSITION:  SEE ABOVE

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