Skip to comments.Prosecutors Are Reading Emails From Inmates to Lawyers
Posted on 07/23/2014 6:04:34 PM PDT by Theoria
The extortion case against Thomas DiFiore, a reputed boss in the Bonanno crime family, encompassed thousands of pages of evidence, including surveillance photographs, cellphone and property records, and hundreds of hours of audio recordings.
But even as Mr. DiFiore sat in a jail cell, sending nearly daily emails to his lawyers on his case and his deteriorating health, federal prosecutors in Brooklyn sought to add another layer of evidence: those very emails. The prosecutors informed Mr. DiFiore last month that they would be reading the emails sent to his lawyers from jail, potentially using his own words against him.
Jailhouse conversations have been many a defendants downfall through incriminating words spoken to inmates or visitors, or in phone calls to friends or relatives. Inmates calls to or from lawyers, however, are generally exempt from such monitoring. But across the country, federal prosecutors have begun reading prisoners emails to lawyers a practice wholly embraced in Brooklyn, where prosecutors have said they intend to read such emails in almost every case.
The issue has spurred court battles over whether inmates have a right to confidential email communications with their lawyers a question on which federal judges have been divided.
An incarcerated former Pennsylvania state senator got into further trouble in 2011 when prosecutors seized his prison emails. In Georgia, officials built a contempt case against a man already in federal prison in part by using emails between him and his lawyers obtained in 2011. And in Austin, Tex., defense lawyers have accused members of law enforcement of recording attorney-client calls from jails, then using that information to tighten their cases.
(Excerpt) Read more at nytimes.com ...
There are no laws.
There are no rules.
There is only Power.
And, so far, We The People don’t seem to have any of that stuff.
Are they giving inmates I-Phones now?
Many “defense” attorneys cannot be trusted. Period.
This is especially true of those who defend Moslem terrorists and supporters. Also true of some of those who defend the Mafia.
Always true of communist attorneys from NLG and CCR. Our system is their enemy and they will do anything they can to undermine and destroy it, even if it includes violating the rules of ethics that all certified attorneys have sworn to obey.
How in the hell can this be getting mixed results in court. This is 100% no holds bared illegal.
Would seem that if mail or phone calls to an attorney are privileged, so should emails be.
OMG, our civilian court system is TOTALLY Awful! We MUST protect the defendants rights... QUICK, now, those civilian trials of Gitmoids... MOVE THEM BACK TO TRIBUNALS at Gitmo!
If this is reported accurately, these emails should not be used against the accused.
In Brooklyn, where at least 2, and possibly more, men are going to be released from prison and get big fat checks from the taxpayers of New York, due to their grievously wrongful convictions under DA Charles Hynes. A disgrace to the Irish American community who should be prosecuted for his own crimes and sent to ATTICA.
Believe me, it will be true of YOUR defense attorney too, should you ever need one.
An attorney’s first duty is to the court, not his client!
Wow. This should be illegal. Seems the jails make it extremely difficult and costly (time is money) to have private conversations between the client and their lawyer. When emails are used (especially because of time constraints), they are subject to monitoring. So, essentially the government is cheating by forcing prisoners to use emails as the primary means of communication with their lawyers, then looking at them because they can be monitored. Emails should be able to be marked “privileged” to preserve attorney-client privilege.
I had no idea that there were places that allowed any inmates to send/receive e mail. Written communications is not read, but California has never allowed inmates to have Internet access.
Wonder how lawyer/client relationships survived all those years before email?
Just do those old-fashioned personal visits with client, problem solved. Forget technology for a while.
The big salary will still be there at the end of the year.
I was involved in some lower courts court room time a few years back over an abuse & custody matter called to testify as a third party witness. What I saw taking places in the hallways between lawyers on both sides made me sick & disgusted. What was done to me as a witness allowed to be treated hostilely on the stand like a criminal made me sicker and far more cynical of courts, crooked lawyers, and senile crooked judges. Never mind the contempt charge I was given and afterward threatened with jail because His Highness napping on the bench from his Irish Coffee break didn't like my answers which were the whole truth.
If the Founding Fathers had known about email they would have said “There is no way this is gonna’ work.”
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