Attorneys for New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft argued in a public filing Wednesday that the cameras involved in the Jupiter (Fla.) Police Department's prostitution investigation were installed illegally after a phony bomb threat, according to multiple outlets.
The filing, submitted in West Palm Beach, Fla., with a request to suppress videos from the case, states that police officers created "a phony 'suspicious package' warning" to have the Orchids of Asia Day Spa evacuated, allowing them to install hidden cameras inside several rooms of the massage parlor.
The filing adds that the police department's approach was "the most drastic, invasive, indiscriminate spying conceivable by law enforcement... in order to prosecute what are at most misdemeanor offenses," according to CNN. It also argues that constitutional protections against unreasonable searches were violated, according to ESPN, by using cameras to prosecute misdemeanor crimes, rather than felonies.
Kraft, 77, is charged with two counts of solicitation, a misdemeanor, stemming from video that police say shows two of his visits to the spa in January. Twenty-three others were also charged with solicitation at the spa, with around 300 men in total charged in a multi-county investigation that involved several other massage parlors.
According to USA Today, the filing says the bomb threat and camera installation occurred Jan. 18, the day before the first of Kraft's alleged visits, which came on consecutive days. Kraft's second alleged visit was Jan. 20, the morning of the AFC Championship Game between the Patriots and Chiefs in Kansas City.
Kraft entered a not-guilty plea and requested a jury trial last week, after previous reports indicated charges would be dropped if he agreed to acknowledge he would have been found guilty at trial. His attorneys have made multiple motions, Wednesday's being the latest, to suppress the release of videos.
The Boston Globe filed a motion to intervene in the proceedings on Wednesday, joining other media in opposition to Kraft's motion to block release of videos.
Kraft issued an apology last month, his only public comments on the matter.
"In deference to the judicial process, I have remained silent these past several weeks," Kraft's statement read. "... I would like to use this opportunity to say something that I have wanted to say for four weeks.
"I am truly sorry. I know I have hurt and disappointed my family, my close friends, my co-workers, our fans and many others who rightfully hold me to a higher standard."