Police charged Aston Hannis (Pictured) under the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act (RIPA) as part of this investigation.
The charge relates to the failure to disclose access codes to an electronic device as requested by police under RIPA.
He has been remanded in custody pending a further hearing.
What is RIPA?
Part 3 of RIPA empowers UK authorities to compel the disclosure of encryption keys or decryption of data. Refusal to comply can result in a maximum sentence of two years’ imprisonment, or five years in cases involving national security or child indecency.
RIPA is one of two laws that can be used to compel password/encryption key disclosure in the UK. The second is the Terrorism Act 2000, which was used against Muhammad Rabbani: a year ago, the international director for campaign group CAGE was found guilty of withholding his PIN, saying that his devices contained confidential data connected to the case of a man he’d just met in Qatar and who alleged he’d been tortured while in US custody.