Snepp v. United States

RESPONDENT:United States
LOCATION:Superior Court of San Diego

DOCKET NO.: 78-1871
DECIDED BY: Burger Court (1975-1981)
LOWER COURT: United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit

CITATION: 444 US 507 (1980)
DECIDED: Feb 19, 1980

Facts of the case

Upon accepting employment in the CIA in 1968, Snepp signed an agreement with the Agency that he would not publish any information during or after his term of employment relating to the Agency’s activities without first obtaining Agency approval. Snepp published a book about CIA activities in South Vietnam without first submitting his manuscript to the Agency for review. A lower court denied Snepp royalties from his book for his failure to secure approval.


Were Snepp’s First Amendment rights violated?