Facebook says it's deciding how to respond to a California Supreme Court ruling that says defense lawyers in a gang-related murder trial can obtain private social media postings.
The Los Angeles Times says the court on Wednesday lifted a stay that had halted a ruling by the judge overseeing the San Francisco trial requiring Facebook and other social media companies to hand over some postings.
That ruling remains under appeal.
However, If the ruling is upheld and Facebook refuses to hand over postings, it might be held in contempt of court.
In a statement, Facebook says it believes federal law prohibits any lower-court order requiring it to turn over private Facebook and Instagram content. The company says it will "continue to protect" user privacy.
The California Supreme Court has ruled that the defense in a gang-related murder trial can obtain private postings from social media companies.
The Los Angeles Times reports the court's decision Wednesday upheld a ruling by the judge overseeing the San Francisco trial and noted that the judge's findings strongly justify access in this case.
The Times says it's the first time such an order has been enforced in a California court.
Last year, the California Supreme Court had ruled that the defense in the gang case could have social media postings that were public at the time of the killings, but that ruling did not deal with private postings.
Under the latest ruling, the judge will decide which postings obtained from social media companies will be given to the defense.
Information from: Los Angeles Times, http://www.latimes.com/
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