When FBI agents asked for permission to rip hundreds of safe deposit boxes from the walls of a Beverly Hills business and haul them away, U.S. Magistrate Steve Kim set some strict limits on the raid.
The business, U.S. Private Vaults, had been charged in a sealed indictment with conspiring to sell drugs and launder money. Its customers had not.
So the FBI could seize the boxes themselves, Kim decided, but had to return what was inside to the owners.
“This warrant does not authorize a criminal search or seizure of the contents of the safety deposit boxes,” Kim’s March 17 seizure warrant declared.
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