The US Attorney filed its answer to Apple in the San Bernardino iPhone case on Thursday, claiming that their battle in court is “the direct result of Apple’s deliberate marketing decision to engineer its products so that the government cannot search them, even with a warrant.”
Prosecutors also argued that the First and Fifth Amendments do not protect Apple from being compelled to help the FBI to bypass security protections on one of their devices. They also said that the request is not unreasonably burdensome for the multi-billion dollar company.
In its brief filed two weeks ago, Apple argued that that a court order could not legally force the company to hack an iPhone 5c belonging to Rizwan Farook, one of the two deceased suspects in the December 2015 mass shooting in San Bernardino, California. According to Apple, this requested custom software could take six to ten engineers anywhere between two to four weeks to write, and it would compromise the security of iPhones everywhere.
Apple has also argued that the First Amendment protects the company from being compelled to write code (which the company says is speech), and that the Fifth Amendment’s Due Process Clause prevents the government from “conscripting a private party with an extraordinarily attenuated connection to the crime.”
A hearing has been set for March 22, when attorneys for both sides will be making these arguments in person before a magistrate judge.