Inside GNSS Media & Research

NOV-DEC 2018

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Page 24 of 59 N O V E M B E R / D E C E M B E R 2 0 1 8 InsideGNSS 25 through this investigation because the information obtained by such method is not important. Secondly, the police did not obtain information automati- cally and continuously for a long period of time. e actual method of obtain- ing information was that the police operated a GPS receiver manually each time to show the location information on the display screen. In other words, such information was not collected and accumulated automatically. is means, according to the court, that the police could not obtain information compre- hensively through the GPS investigation conducted in this case. Based on these two elements, the court of prior instance concluded that the GPS investigation did not fall under the compulsory disposi- tion that required a warrant. us, the court did not find the GPS investigation illegal. Issue 2 did not become a problem because, according to this court's deci- sion, a warrant was not necessary for GPS investigation. e views of the District Court and High Court about the legality of the GPS investigation were totally different. erefore, it was all the more interest- ing how the Supreme Court decided on this issue. e next section describes the decision of the Supreme Court. Supreme Court's Ruling (Supreme Court 2016(A) No.442, March 15, 2017; Keishu Vol. 71, No. 3) e Supreme Court ruled the accused guilty from evidences other than evi- dences obtained through the GPS inves- tigation. On the other hand, as obiter dictum, the Court mentioned the legal- ity of the GPS investigation. e Court first considered the nature of the GPS investigation and held that it entails the invasion of the personal sphere by the public authority. GPS investigation which is conducted to retrieve and monitor current location information of the target vehicle makes it possible, by its nature, to monitor the location and movements of the target vehicle and its owner, not only when they are on public streets but also when they are in such places or their activities relate to such areas as require strong pro- tection of personal privacy. Since such a method of investigation inevitably involves the continuous, comprehensive monitoring of the person's activities, it can infringe upon the personal privacy. Fur t hermore, GPS investigation should be considered to entail the inva- sion of the private sphere by public authorities, in that it is conducted by secretly attaching devices that enable such infringement of privacy to personal property. e Court then analyzed Article 35 of the Constitution and found that, the "right … to be secure in their homes, papers a nd ef fects aga inst ent ries, searches and seizures" under the Article covers the right against the "invasion" into the private sphere that is equivalent to "homes, papers and effects". Based on this understanding, the Court held that GPS investigation is a

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