Violation of Discovery

Criminal Defense Lawyer Practice Remedies for Violation of Discovery Orders

Criminal defense lawyers who do not receive discovery within time limits set out by Florida statutes must file a motion to compel and set for hearing with proper notice to all parties. If the prosecutor to comply with the courts discovery orders the court generally has a number of options for dealing with the violation. For example, according to Criminal Lawyer William Ryan Moore, the federal rules provide:

If at any time during the course of the proceedings it is brought to the attention of the court that a party has failed to comply with this rule, the court may order such party to permit the discovery or inspection, grant a continuance, or prohibit the party from introducing evidence not disclosed, or it may enter such other order as it deems just under the circumstances. The least drastic remedy for violations of discovery orders is to order immediate disclosure and offer a continuance for the party to examine the material.

Criminal defense lawyers in Broward County and surrounding areas are urged to argue for exclusion.

Other possible sanctions authorized in Florida include instructing the jury to assume the accuracy of certain facts that might have been established through the non-disclosed material; holding the offending party in contempt of court; declaring a mistrial; or in the case of a violation by the government, dismissing the prosecution.

Discovery violations by the defense may occur when defense counsel are conflicted about their dual roles as advocates for the defendant and as members of the bar charged with responsibilities to the legal profession. For example, standards of professional responsibility and statutory prohibitions against concealing evidence require defense counsel to turn over certain items (i.e., the fruits and instrumentalities of the crime) to the police.

Fort Lauderdale criminal defense lawyers should note that surrendering such evidence to the police, however, may assist in the conviction of counsel's client. Defense counsel usually avoid such dilemmas by refusing to accept tainted evidence from their clients.

Coral Springs Criminal Defense Team:

Further information about the discovery procedures followed in the South Florida criminal arena please contact our Criminal Lawyers in Coral Springs (responsible for research in this criminal law section).