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Invalidity of the procedural act as a result of a breach of the secrecy of the investigation

Sep 1, 2019

In the framework of a dispute on the nullity of a search filmed by journalists, the French Court of Cassation ruled that the mere presence during the execution of this act, of a third party not involved in the proceedings, independently of any image capture or recording, constitutes a violation of the secrecy of the investigation, necessarily prejudicing the interests of the concerned party.

“It is a violation of the secrecy of the investigation or judicial inquiry concomitant with the carrying out of a search, necessarily prejudicial to the interests of the person concerned, for a third party not connected with the proceedings to be present during the performance of that act, having obtained authorization to that end from a public authority, even if for the purpose of reporting on the conduct of the search for the purpose of informing the public.”

Cass. crim., 9 Jan. 2019, No. 17-84.026, FS-P+B+I