Video evidence allegedly showing New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft and other men in sex acts at a Florida massage parlor was supressed by a Florida judge, a victory in Kraft’s defense against misdemeanor charges that he solicited prostitution, reports the Wall Street Journal. Police obtained warrants to conduct video surveillance inside the Orchids of Asia Day Spa in Jupiter, Fl., and they said a major human-trafficking operation was under way. Prosectuors have since conceded there was no evidence of human trafficking at the spa. Kraft’s attorneys have fought the public release of the tapes and their admissibility, saying the video surveillance was obtained illegally.
Palm Beach County Judge Leonard Hanser ruled that the search warrant to obtain the video surveillance “did not satisfy constitutional requirements” for privacy. His ruling added that Kraft had “a reasonable, subjective expectation of privacy” in the spa, where customers regularly remove their clothing. Hanser suppressed “all evidence” obtained against Kraft through the search warrant and that the traffic stop where Kraft was identified after leaving the spa was an unlawful search. The feud over the tapes included a group of other spa customers who aren’t accused of wrongdoing, including women who sued state and local police, arguing that they were illegally filmed in a private space. raft and two dozen other men were charged with solicitation of prostitution in February.