Aaron Gach wasn't expecting U.S. Customs and Border Protection agents to demand to search his smartphone when he returned to San Fransisco from Belgium in February.
The artist and magician, a U.S. citizen, had just attended an art event near Brussels and was targeted for advanced screening by CBP after his flight landed in the U.S. During a series of questions from CBP agents ("Did you pack your bag yourself?"), they repeatedly asked to search his smartphone, Gach said.
"Do you understand that if you choose not to unlock your phone we may need to detain your other personal effects?" one agent told him, according to a description of the encounter that Gach posted online.