Palm Beach County Judge Leonard Hanser ordered Robert Kraft to appear in court at an upcoming hearing scheduled in the New England Patriots owner’s criminal case. Kraft is charged with two counts of misdemeanor solicitation of prostitution after he was one of about two dozen men caught in a Jupiter police investigation into possible prostitution at a Treasure Coast massage parlor, the Orchids of Asia Day Spa. Kraft has pleaded not guilty.
The hearing is a calendar call. WPTV’s Merris Badcock reported that the hearing is to determine if the case can proceed to trial.
Earlier in the day, prosecutors and defense lawyers argued for a third day about videos that appear to be key evidence in the case. For the investigation, police requested and received a warrant to record what happened inside Orchids of Asia, including people as they received massages and what police have described as sexual acts. Kraft’s legal team argued the videos should be thrown out because the warrant to record never should have been granted.
The state has argued that the videos were legally obtained via a search warrant approved by a judge and should be allowed.
Hanser didn’t issue his decision today. Per TCPalm.com’s Will Greenlee, Hanser told the court: “I’m going to consider his case, and conduct his case the way I would anybody else’s case”
.In other developments:
- From TCPalm.com: A judge in neighboring Martin County ruled that videos recorded in that jurisdiction’s cases can’t be used as evidence in court. County Judge Kathleen Roberts wrote: “The difference between surveillance and video surveillance is akin to the difference between a pat down and a strip search. Because of its highly intrusive nature, the requirements to curtail what can be captured must be scrutinized and high levels of responsibility must be met to avoid the intrusion on the activities of the innocent. These strict standards were simply not met in this case.”
- From the New York Post: Detective Andrew Sharp described this as the system used by investigators to know if sexual services were going to be administered: “If they kept their boxer shorts on, then it was more than likely no illicit activity was going to occur.”