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ACLU says feds must get warrant to access drug database (KSL, 7/30/16)

By Admin @ Sep 1, 2016
ACLU says feds must get warrant to access drug database

SALT LAKE CITY — The American Civil Liberties Union of Utah is pushing back against the Drug Enforcement Administration in a lawsuit over whether investigators should have access to the state's prescription drug database without a warrant.

The court documents filed Thursday support a state law that requires agents to get a warrant before searching the records of all prescription drugs dispensed to patients in the state.

The DEA says its agents need the records for their investigations and they're exempt because federal authority overrides the state law.

Utah authorities disagree, and the ACLU says unfettered access to such personal information violates patients' rights.

The law was passed after two Utah firefighters were accused of prescription drug fraud after a wide-ranging database search.

Though the charges were dropped, they say in a separate lawsuit the search was unconstitutional.