Jason Chen recently struck an agreement with the DA’s office in San Mateo, California whereby all the computer equipment seized by authorities will be returned to the Gizmodo editor in exchange for Gizmodo’s cooperation into the DA’s investigation into how exactly Gizmodo came to be in possession of the now infamous iPhone 4 prototype.
Gizmodo and its parent company, Gawker Media LLC, had been resisting efforts by the district attorney’s office to search computers and other equipment seized from the home of Jason Chen, the Gizmodo editor who wrote about the iPhone prototype. Gawker had said that it was inappropriate for law-enforcement officials to seize materials from a news organization just with a search warrant, which news organizations can’t challenge in court.
The San Mateo County judge overseeing the Gizmodo case on Friday ordered the search warrant to be withdrawn and the materials taken from Mr. Chen to be returned to him. Gawker Media Chief Operating Officer Gaby Darbyshire said Gizmodo has agreed voluntarily to give the district attorney materials that a court appointee “deems relevant to the case.”