Evidence Tossed in Similar Massage Parlor Cases Due to “Minimization Requirements”
If you’ve been following the Robert Kraft story as closely as we have, then you’re likely to know that one of the major questions surrounding the case is whether or not the video evidence taking from inside the massage parlor was acquired legally. The sheriff’s department maintains that the evidence was legally acquired through the use of a highly-invasive sneak-and-peek warrant. The defense maintains that this evidence should be tossed wholesale because those warrants were authorized under the Patriot Act and are only used in terror cases or cases that involve serious harm coming to others.
Whether or not the evidence will be admitted is more interesting than the case itself which involves two misdemeanor counts of soliciting a prostitute. The Sheriff’s Department has maintained that this was part of a larger human trafficking investigation, but thus far, not one person has been charged with human trafficking. More disturbing still, if the evidence is allowed to be admitted, it could provoke an unprecedented level of legal intrusion into the homes and businesses of American citizens.
Defense Motion to Quash Evidence Still Undecided
The prosecution appeared to hope to avoid the entire possibility that their evidence would be thrown out by extending Kraft (and others) a plea deal to drop the charges entirely if the defendant admitted that he would be convicted at trial. Kraft, however, rejected that plea and his attorneys are now in the process of questioning the legality of the evidence acquired against Kraft and others. Every American should hope that Kraft wins this motion because it would be very bad if law enforcement were able to circumvent the warrant process in order to justify lazy police work. It would open up a can of worms that essentially violated Fourth Amendment protections against searches and seizures.
Martin County Judge Tosses Surveillance Evidence
A Martin County judge tossed similar evidence in a day spa bust involving other defendants. However, the rationale was not as pro-liberty as one might hope. According to the judge, the evidence gleaned was illegal simply because the Sheriff’s Department failed to follow the strict standards that the law requires when covertly spying on American citizens. In this case, the video surveillance captured some illegal activity, but it also captured individuals who were there for legitimate services. The judge decided this violated “minimization requirements” which requires that law enforcement avoid capturing material unrelated to the crime they are investigating. Meanwhile, Kraft’s attorneys attacked the legitimacy of the warrant in terms of its content and execution and not the legitimacy of the warrant in terms of its overall legality.
Talk to a West Palm Beach Criminal Defense Attorney
If you’ve been charged with a crime in area, the West Palm Beach criminal attorneys at The Skier Law Firm, P.A. will represent you in matters related to your prosecution. Contact us today and we can begin going over your options.