On July 31, Federal District Judge Loretta A. Preska (Southern District of New York) upheld the decision of a magistrate judge requiring Microsoft to turn over the contents of customer email stored in Ireland to U.S. investigators. The magistrate’s April decision was previously discussed on this blog.

Federal investigators had obtained a warrant for the email content under the federal Stored Communication Act (“SCA”). Microsoft sought to quash the warrant with respect to the production of customer emails stored on a server in Dublin, Ireland, arguing that the enforcement of the warrant would be an improper, extra-territorial application of United States law.

Judge Preska’s decision rejected Microsoft’s arguments, upholding the magistrate judge’s earlier ruling that SCA warrants, like subpoenas, may properly require “the recipient to produce information in its possession, custody, or control regardless of the location of that information.” 

Judge Preska stayed her decision pending further appeal by Microsoft.