Has anyone had any luck protecting the identity of the CI in an asset forfeiture case where discovery has been sent asking for the names of all people with knowledge of relevant facts? If so, using what objection/law? We are genuinely concerned for the safety of the CI, though we do not plan to use her again.
I can help with that. You will need to assert a privilege to discovery. There is a process set for in the Rules of Evidence that state the procedure the Court should follow in determining whether to reveal the identity. I also have a good law review article that discusses all relevant case law. I will try to get back with you next week.
Although it was in the context of a PIA request, the Texas Supreme Court recently clarified that "[o]ur common law protects individuals from physical harm, and, consistent with the PIA, that protection extends to the disclosure of information that substantially threatens such harm." Texas Dep't of Pub. Safety v. Cox Tex. Newspapers, L.P., 343 S.W.3d 112, 120 (Tex. 2011). I believe the court's reference to the privilege as one arising from the common law, rather than the language of the PIA itself, would support its assertion in a non-PIA case.
Posts: 1233 | Location: Amarillo, Texas, USA | Registered: March 15, 2001