The software, which was designed to be activated if the school-issue Apple MacBooks were missing or dues were unpaid, was found to have recorded thousands of images of schoolchildren in their homes.
The case came to light after a fifteen year old pupil was punished for apparently taking drugs at home (they turned out to be candy), using pictures taken from the laptop as evidence. His parents sued and it was disclosed that the software was in widespread use by the school.
"After a thorough review of the evidence in this matter, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Montgomery County District Attorney's Office, the Montgomery County Detectives, and the Lower Merion Police Department, I have concluded that bringing criminal charges is not warranted in this matter," US Attorney Zane Memeger said in a statement.
"For the government to prosecute a criminal case, it must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the person charged acted with criminal intent. We have not found evidence that would establish beyond a reasonable doubt that anyone involved had criminal intent."
Memeger said that he wanted to make the announcement to clear the air before the start of the school year. The software has now been removed from the laptops.
The case inspired US Democratic senator Arlen Specter to propose a new law that would make such spying illegal, which is currently under consideration. The civil suit against the school district is still pending, and a second pupil has joined the case.
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