Attorneys for New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft are scheduled for a hearing at 10 a.m. ET in the Florida Fourth District Court of Appeal. Court will be held via a Zoom video conference. You can watch in the player above.
Prosecutors are trying to save their case against the NFL billionaire. The defendant faces two misdemeanor counts of soliciting another to commit prostitution.
Police have said they had him dead to rights: investigators planted hidden cameras at the Orchids of Asia Day Spa in Jupiter, Florida. Authorities said that as part of their prostitution investigation, they caught the Patriots patriarch in a salacious act.
But Kraft’s team fought the charges instead of taking a plea deal, and successfully argued that surveillance footage was illegally obtained by police. A judge ruled that spa customers had a reasonable expectation of privacy, and the search warrant didn’t address minimizing procedures well enough.
“Far from having justification commensurate with the extraordinary invasions it perpetuated, law enforcement in this case had no authority whatsoever for something as drastic as ‘sneak and peek’ video surveillance, much less continuous, unbounded video surveillance of naked patrons in private licensed massage parlors,” the defendant wrote in a filing obtained by Law&Crime.
Minimization procedure should’ve included ways to protect female customers at the spa from surveillance.
“Failing to consider and include instructions on minimizing the impact on women, through a highly intrusive law enforcement technique in a setting with a high legitimate expectation of privacy, is a serious flaw in the search warrant, especially considering that the search warrant did not allege women were seeking illegal contact,” Judge Leonard Hanser wrote. “The testimony indicates the videotapes of these individuals remain in the records of the Jupiter Police Department.”
[Image via Kevin Winter/Getty Images]
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