Hearing set to determine if video from prostitution sting will be suppressed


FILE – In this Jan. 20, 2019, file photo, New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft walks on the field before the AFC Championship NFL football game in Kansas City, Mo. Florida prosecutors have offered a plea deal to Kraft and other men charged with paying for illicit sex at a massage parlor. The Palm Beach State Attorney confirmed Tuesday, March 19, 2019, it has offered Kraft and 24 other men charged with soliciting prostitution the standard diversion program offered to first-time offenders. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall, File)

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PALM BEACH, Fl. — A hearing is scheduled Friday to determine whether officials will release the video evidence from a prostitution sting that resulted in misdemeanor charges against New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft.

Friday’s hearing at the Palm Beach County courthouse was scheduled after multiple media outlets, including CNN, requested that video from the sting, which allegedly shows Kraft receiving paid sexual services, be released.

Lawyers for Kraft filed a second amended motion in court Wednesday, unrelated to Friday’s hearing, requesting that all video evidence be suppressed.

The motion argues that the release of video evidence would “destroy any prospect” of a fair trial.

Attorneys for Kraft filed the first motion March 28, according to court documents.

Kraft was charged, along with dozens of other defendants, with solicitation of prostitution after a sting at the Orchids of Asia Day Spa in Jupiter, Florida, in February. He has denied through a spokesman that he committed a crime.

Hundreds of people were charged statewide in the multi-jurisdictional sting that began in October 2018.

Kraft has waived his arraignment and requested a jury trial in the case.

Lawyers for Kraft have also raised questions about the legality of the surveillance that was conducted because Kraft and others charged with solicitation were not, in fact, charged with human trafficking.

In court documents, Kraft’s attorneys argue law enforcement provided false information in the affidavit to obtain a warrant for the prostitution sting, therefore making the video evidence inadmissible.

Florida prosecutors offered to drop misdemeanor charges against him in exchange for fines, community service and an admission that he would be found guilty if he went to trial. But a source familiar with the case told CNN that Kraft will not accept the deal.

“I am truly sorry,” Kraft said in a statement last month. “I know I have hurt and disappointed my family, my close friends, my co-workers, our fans and many others who rightfully hold me to a higher standard.”

A hearing on the initial motion is scheduled for April 26.

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