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State v. Saez

New Jersey Supreme Court


Decided: February 23, 1995.

STATE OF NEW JERSEY, PLAINTIFF-RESPONDENT,
v.
EDDIE SAEZ, DEFENDANT-APPELLANT. STATE OF NEW JERSEY, PLAINTIFF-RESPONDENT, V. ORLANDO NAVARRO, DEFENDANT-APPELLANT. STATE OF NEW JERSEY, PLAINTIFF-RESPONDENT, V. LUIS SAEZ, DEFENDANT-APPELLANT.

On appeal from the Superior Court, Appellate Division, whose opinion is reported at 268 N.J. Super. 250 (1993).

Chief Justice Wilentz and Justices Handler, Pollock, O'hern, Garibaldi, Stein and Coleman join in this opinion.

Per Curiam

Defendants appeal as of right on the basis of the Dissent in the Appellate Division. R. 2:2-1(a). We reverse the judgment of the Appellate Division substantially for the reasons set forth in Judge D'Annunzio's Dissenting opinion. 268 N.J. Super. 250, 270-79 (1993). Although we do not imply that the third-party intervention exception applies only when the informant previously has reduced to possession the objects viewed by law-enforcement officials, we are generally in accord with the Dissenting opinion's analysis that described the extended and continuous police surveillance as a significant expansion of the informant's prior observation of the activities conducted in the adjacent basement. Id. at 272-73.

Because the majority and the Dissenting member of the Appellate Division panel agreed that defendants retained a reasonable expectation of privacy in respect of their activities in the basement apartment, and that under the circumstances the extended surveillance of the activities conducted in the adjacent basement was not a reasonable search otherwise justified by the plain-view exception to the requirement for a search warrant, that issue is not before us and we do not address it.

Judgment reversed. The matter is remanded to the Law Division for retrial.

CHIEF JUSTICE WILENTZ and JUSTICES HANDLER, POLLOCK, O'HERN, GARIBALDI, STEIN, and COLEMAN join in this opinion.

Disposition

Judgment of the Appellate Division is REVERSED and the matter is REMANDED to the Law Division for retrial.

19950223


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