Last time, we spoke briefly about Florida’s so-called revenge porn law, noting the importance of working with an experienced attorney when one faces charges under the law. This is particularly with respect to search and seizure issues, which can become an issue in any criminal case.
Florida’s sexual cyberharassment law provides that no warrant for arrest is needed when there is probable cause to believe an individual has committed a violation of the law. There is nothing out of the ordinary with this provision as there are a number of situations in which an officer may lawfully arrest a criminal suspect without a warrant. Florida’s sexual cyberharassment law does provide, though, that a warrant must be obtained before searching a suspect’s private dwelling.
The requirement that law enforcement obtain a warrant prior to searching a criminal suspect’s private dwelling is potentially important in criminal defense cases involving allegations of revenge porn, particularly when incriminating evidence is obtained by means of a violation of the warrant requirement. As in other cases where law enforcement fails to abide by the requirements of law concerning search warrants, it may be possible for criminal defendants in such cases to have illegal obtained evidence suppressed from trial.
The idea behind this protection is to deter violations of the privacy rights of criminal suspects and to prevent the government from benefiting from violations of law in criminal investigations. Those who have been arrested for any criminal violation, but especially violations of law involving Internet and computer-related activities, should work with an experienced attorney to ensure their privacy rights are protected, and that they have the opportunity to build the strongest possible defense case at trial.