A Quantity of Copies of Books v. Kansas

In A Quantity of Copies of Books v. Kansas, 378 U.S. 205, 84 S.Ct. 1723, 12 L.Ed.2d 809 (1964), a case involving a massive seizure of books held for distribution by sale, the Supreme Court held that the ex parte securing of the search warrant did not "focus searchingly on the question of obscenity" and that seizure of the allegedly obscene material was unconstitutional since no adversary hearing upon the issue of obscenity had been held prior to the seizure. In A Quantity of Books v. Kansas, 378 U.S. 205, 84 S.Ct. 1723, 12 L.Ed.2d 809 (1964), the Court concluded that the procedures followed in issuing and executing the warrant of seizure of a large quantity of allegedly obscene books from the place of business of P-K News Service were constitutionally deficient. The Court emphasized that because the warrant authorized the sheriff to seize all copies of the books in question and P-K was not afforded a hearing on the obscenity issue before the warrant issued the procedures lacked the safeguards necessary to prevent suppression of non-obscene publications protected by the Constitution. The Court found it unnecessary to rule on P-K's assertion that its constitutional right against unreasonable searches and seizures had been violated.