Twitter has succumed to threats of contempt of court charges and significant fines, and has handed over a trove of tweets from Occupy Wall Street protestor Malcolm Harris to a Manhattan Criminal Court.
The tweets had been subpoenaed by the Manhattan district attorney's office, which demanded that Twitter provide it with access to Harris' account and three months of tweets, which were no longer available online.
According to the BBC, prosecutors believe the messages will bolster their case against Harris, who has pleaded not guilty. In his defense, he claims that police had lured 700 protestors – Harris among them – onto the Brooklyn Bridge, only to arrest them for obstructing traffic.
Twitter had fought the subpoena, citing privacy laws, but buckled under on Friday, the deadline set by the court, after the company's lawyers made one last plea to the judge to stay the order to hand over the tweets, which he refused.
Criminal Court Judge Matthew Sciarrino will keep the tweets under seal pending an appeal filed by Harris' attorney, which is scheduled to be heard within seven days. ®