FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. — A Florida appeals court has ruled that police violated the rights of New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft and others when they secretly video recorded them paying for massage parlor sex acts.
The decision Wednesday by the 4th District Court of Appeal bars the tapes' use at trial and could deal a potentially deadly blow to the prosecution.
The court decided that Kraft’s rights were violated under the 4th Amendment to the Constitution, which protects against unreasonable searches and seizures. Prosecutors could appeal to the state Supreme Court but if this ruling stands, charges against Kraft and others may be dropped.
Last year, a Florida appeals court agreed to hear an appeal related to video used to charge Kraft.
Kraft has pleaded not guilty to charges of soliciting another to commit prostitution and has requested a jury trial.
In reference to the ruling, the state attorney's office in Palm Beach County released the following statement Wednesday:
"We are in the process of reviewing the opinion and will comment publicly at the appropriate time."