According to federal and New Jersey statute, wiretapping is the use of an intercepting device in order to overhear or record electronic communications. A device that just records the numbers to which outgoing phone calls are made is not considered a wiretapping device. The wiretapping statutes also do not apply to silent video or even to the video component of a video recording with sound. New Jersey also permits the recording of one’s own telephone conversations with others without the knowledge or consent of the other parties.
If you want to challenge the government’s wiretapping of a telephone conversation in New Jersey, you must be the target of the evidence gathered in the wiretap or a party to one of the wiretapped conversations. Someone does not have standing to challenge if they were affected by evidence from a wiretapping if the purpose of the wiretapping was to gather evidence against someone else.
When a criminal defendant wants to allege illegal wiretapping, she or he bears the burden of alleging 1) facts to show that he or she reasonably believed that there was wiretapping a activity, and 2) that the defendant had an interest in the place where the wiretapped conversations took place.
New Jersey courts have ruled that even though generally prisoner’s telephone conversations may be recorded as a matter of routine, a police officer violated wiretapping statutes when he wiretapped privileged conversations between a prisoner and the prisoner’s attorney.
New Jersey wiretapping statutes, on one hand, can serve to challenge the government’s use of wiretapped information. On the other hand, it should be noted that wiretapping is a crime for anyone – whether individual, business, or law enforcement – unless one or more of the statutory exceptions applies.
If you have been accused of violating the New Jersey wiretapping statute, or you are a defendant in a criminal case and believe that evidence against you was obtained through a violation of the wiretapping statute, it is in your best interest to consult a New Jersey criminal defense attorney with expertise in all the issues and complexities that come with allegations of wiretapping offenses. Call our experienced New Jersey corporate criminal defense attorneys at 973-200-3630 to schedule an immediate consultation.