US drugs case dropped over storage

A US drugs case got dismissed because of costs related to the criminally low data storage that drugs cops have.

In 2007, Dr. Armando Angulo, was indicted in 2007 on charges of illegally selling prescription drugs. He hid in Panama which refused to extradite him.

But, according to Slashdot, the DEA has so much electronic data that maintaining it is now a hardship and the government wants to drop the whole case.

The amount is really tiny by modern standards. The material is contained in two terabytes of electronic data and this takes up five percent of DEA’s world-wide electronic storage capacity.

Given that you can probably store the entire case on a portable hard drive, you might wonder what the DEA is complaining about. What is perhaps more alarming is that the coppers can only have 60TB of storage space. We would have thought that with these flash storage systems and cloud providers the DEA could have all the storage space it could eat for a few thousand a year. The entire case could be preserved by popping to Best Buy and getting a new hard drive for about $500. Not much when you have a budget of $2 billion.

Stephanie Rose, the US attorney for northern Iowa does not seem to think this is the case. She said that continued storage of these materials is difficult and expensive.

It is not just the electronic evidence – the case has “several hundred boxes” of paper documents, along with dozens of computers and servers.