S6341 Senator Duane / A3712 Assemblyman Lentol
An ACT to amend the criminal procedure law, in relation to the regulation of the use of informants.
MEMORANDUM IN OPPOSITION
An ACT to amend the criminal procedure law,
in relation to the regulation of the use of informants.
S6341 Senator Duane
A3712 Assemblyman Lentol
This memorandum in opposition is submitted on behalf of the New York State Association of Chiefs of Police, opposing the passage of Senate bill S 6341 and Assembly bill A 3712.
This legislation imposes additional burdens upon a system that has been carefully organized in order to serve law enforcement agencies to the best of its ability. Current procedures have been established to insure that all confidential informants are, tested, cleared and registered before serving in this capacity. All confidential informants undergo extensive background investigation, and are fingerprinted, photographed, and routinely monitored. All information provided by or obtained through an informant is corroborated by law enforcement officers prior to the commencement of a prosecution. This information is checked, regulated and confirmed under thorough scrutiny.
This legislation would destroy this process and lead to an unsafe and unreliable procedure of obtaining information, for the informant, law enforcement officials, and the community. Public disclosure would eliminate the anonymity that the confidential informant process requires and therefore prevent a potential confidential informant from cooperating for fear of their identity being revealed.
Lastly, confidential informants do not and are under contract not to commit further crimes while they are serving as confidential informants. These terms are specified in a written contract/agreement that the informant signs. Confidential informants are a critical and vital component of a police agency's ability to infiltrate the criminal element. In smaller communities, as well as in large cities, undercover officers depend on confidential informants. Properly controlled informants are essential in the battle to fight crime.
Since this bill would create unnecessary regulations which would undermine the source and the substance of critical and useful information in criminal cases and undermine pending and future investigations, we strongly oppose its enactment into law.
New York State Association of Chiefs of Police, Inc.