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Zoey_ JD
Zoey_ JD, JustAnswer Criminal Law Mentor
Category: Criminal Law
Satisfied Customers: 27418
Experience:  Admitted to NYS Criminal defense bar in 1989. Extensive arraignment, hearing, trial experience.
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can police listen to old conversations made from cell phon

Resolved Question:

can police listen to old conversations made from cell phones
Submitted: 7 years ago.
Category: Criminal Law
Expert:  Zoey_ JD replied 7 years ago.
How did the police get the phone?
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
by phone number and/or service they are with
Expert:  Zoey_ JD replied 7 years ago.

I'm not entirely clear about what's happened here because you haven't provided much information. Before I answer can you clarify:

Are you saying that police have tapped into your cell phone service and have listened to some of your old calls? Or are you asking whether it's okay for police to play back your phone messages? Or are you asking something else altogether?
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
can police tapp into your cell phone service and listened to some of your old calls
Expert:  Zoey_ JD replied 7 years ago.
Thanks for the quick reply.

Police are allowed to tap into your phone and listen to your old calls, but if they do so without first asking for your consent to invade your privacy, they are supposed to first obtain a court order allowing that.

To get the order, they need to show probable cause -- a reasonable belief that criminal activity may be taking place and that the phone calls may present evidence of that -- along with a showing that they cannot safely get this evidence any other less intrusive way. If they convince a prosecutor of that, the matter goes before a judge who issues the order.

If there is no order, or if the scope of what the police listened to falls outside of what is designated in the order, such matters can get challenged by the defense at special pre-trial suppression hearings designed to address violations of a defendant's constitutional rights. If such a hearing gets won, any evidence in the phone calls would not be admissible against the defendant at trial.


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This thread will not close and you can always use it to get clarification.This is informational only and is NOT legal advice. There is no attorney-client relationship. You are advised to consult an attorney in your state for specific legal advice.
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