Fairfield Eavesdropping Lawyer
If you are facing accusations of eavesdropping in Fairfield, it wise to take the allegations seriously with the help of a top-rated attorney. A Fairfield eavesdropping lawyer can help you collect evidence and build a strong case to obtain an optimal outcome.
How Is Eavesdropping Defined?
Someone commits eavesdropping under C.G.S. §53a-189 when they unlawfully engage in activities defined in C.G.S. §53a-187, namely, wiretapping and mechanical overhearing of a conversation. Actions must be both intentional and unlawful to constitute a violation. Thankfully, an eavesdropping lawyer in Fairfield can work to refute charges by showing that any alleged transgressions were committed unintentionally or under proper authority.
Wiretapping is defined as using a device to overhear or record a telephone conversation without proper consent. Mechanical overhearing of a conversation occurs when someone uses equipment to record or listen in on communications between others without the consent of one party.
How Important Is Consent for Eavesdropping Cases?
The standards differ between criminal and civil law regarding the issue of consent in eavesdropping cases. Under the definitions in Connecticut General Statutes (C.G.S.) §53a-187, the consent of one party to a conversation prevents actions involving that conversation from being considered criminal eavesdropping. Accordingly, a Fairfield eavesdropping lawyer can defend against charges by showing that one person involved in a conversation gave permission for the conduct alleged to be eavesdropping. However, if you don’t have the consent of all parties involved, you may still be civilly liable.
Can I Be Civilly Liable for Eavesdropping?
Under C.G.S. §52-570d, an individual has the right to sue someone for eavesdropping activities unless all parties to a conversation consent to the recording of a conversation. This would be a civil lawsuit brought by an individual seeking monetary damages as opposed to a criminal charge prosecuted by the government.
Even civil liability is limited because there are certain circumstances where an individual may record a conversation without the consent of all parties, such as where that person has been subjected to harassing or threatening calls. Moreover, actual consent is not required so long as the recording party provides adequate notice that a conversation will be recorded.
How Does a Conviction Affect Me?
Those found guilty of eavesdropping can be sentenced to as many as five years in prison and required to pay a fine as high as $5,000. Eavesdropping is a Class D felony under C.G.S. §53a-189, and it brings all the attendant consequences of a felony record.
While a conviction may not be ideal, a Fairfield eavesdropping lawyer can seek alternative penalties. In addition, an attorney can work toward minimizing the negative impact on the official record.
Contact a Fairfield Eavesdropping Attorney
It is important for anyone accused of criminal eavesdropping to understand their rights and how to protect those rights. In addition to providing representation, a knowledgeable Fairfield eavesdropping lawyer can work to collect evidence to defend against the charges. To learn more about the benefits an experienced defense lawyer can provide in your situation, call Mark Sherman Law for a case evaluation.