Update on the Heller Subpoena
Posted on September 29, 2012
In a new article in the San Francisco Chronicle, Chevron suggests that it subpoenaed Kevin Jon Heller’s gmail account because it didn’t believe that the account belonged to him. This hardly seems credible—Chevron could simply have asked Heller, or it could have done five minutes of googling.
I want to clear up a misconception that several people have had when I’ve discussed this case with them. The subpoena did not, and really could not, call for the contents of Heller’s emails. Under the Stored Communications Act, which I’ve covered before, Chevron would have to serve a subpoena on Heller himself, rather than on Google, to get the emails themselves. Instead, the subpoena called for IP logs and the like.