♥ karina ♥ (karina) wrote in burning_man,
♥ karina ♥

news from EM:DEF: florida crackhouse case


from: EM:DEF

*** Club La Vela Verdict ***

Tallahassee, FL, Nov. 27 -- After less than two hours of deliberation,
jurors in the Club La Vela trial returned with a verdict of "not guilty"
on all charges for defendants Patrick and Thorsten Pfeffer. This
precedent setting case deals a major blow to federal prosecutors who for
the second time this year have tried to use a 1986 law designed to rid
neighborhoods of crack houses against persons who manage nightclubs that
play electronic dance music.

Although the Pfeffer brothers were accused of violating federal
narcotics laws, no drugs were ever found on them or inside their club
(similar to the New Orleans case.) Instead of drugs, trial prosecutors
showed the jury BlowPops, gum, and glow sticks - items seized in a April
27th raid on the club. The assorted candies were presented as
"evidence" that Club La Vela patrons were using drugs. Prosecutors also
showed the jury a picture downloaded from Club La Vela's website of a
man giving a massage to another man - this too was introduced as
"evidence" of drug use. Thankfully jurors didn't buy the prosecution's
arguments. The fact that it took only 75 minutes for jurors to reach a
unanimous "not guilty" verdict stands in stark (and embarrassing)
contrast to the five years prosecutors and law enforcement agencies
spent investigating Club La Vela.


Reporters, lawyers, club owners, or others seeking more details on this
case (i.e. court documents, legal statues, background info, etc) should
visit the EMDEF web page for the Club La Vela case:


(all info is free - no registration required - your privacy respected)


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