Student Sues FBI Over GPS Tracking Device Placed in His Vehicle with No Warrant

gps tracking device afifiA lawsuit was filed last week against the FBI and US Dept. of Justice by Yasir Afifi for secretly hiding a GPS tracking device under his car without a warrant. The lawsuit says this was a violation of his civil rights.  The lawsuit was  filed by the Council on American-Islamic Relations on Afifi’s behalf. They are seeking compensation, an injunction, and a decision saying that any use of GPS tracking devices without a warrant in the US is unconstitutional.

Afifi is a 20 year old, Muslim college student who who was born and raised in the USA. He lives in Santa Clara, CA. He claims he has not been involved in any suspicious activity, and there is no way the FBI would have a valid reason for placing an inconspicuous GPS tracking device on his vehicle. He is now suing the FBI for secretly placing the GPS tracking device on his car.

The GPS tracking device was found by a mechanic during a routine oil change. Not knowing exactly what the black box was or who had put it there, a friend of Afifi’s posted images of the GPS tracking device on the internet. Two days later, 6 FBI agents showed up at Afifi’s house, demanding their property back. The FBI insisted he immediately return the GPS tracking device.

The lawsuit says the agents who showed up to collect the device were “hostile,” threatening to charge Afifi if he didn’t immediately cooperate and refusing his request to have a lawyer present. The suit also says agents showed they knew private details about his life, such as which restaurants he dined at, the new job he’d just obtained and his plans to travel abroad.

We reported on this story, a few months ago, when Afifi first found the device and discovered it was from the FBI.  For more information, go to Student Finds FBI GPS Tracking Device Secretly Placed in His Vehicle.