Regulations approved for use of jailhouse informants

A bill that requires increased transparency in the use of jailhouse informants was passed by the Legislature April 18.

<a href='http://news.legislature.ne.gov/dist46' target='_blank' title='Link to the website of Sen. Adam Morfeld'>Sen. Adam Morfeld</a>
Sen. Adam Morfeld

Under LB352, introduced by Lincoln Sen. Adam Morfeld, if a prosecutor intends to use the testimony of a jailhouse informant, he or she is required to provide certain information to the defense, including:
• the informant’s known criminal history;
• any benefit requested, offered or provided to the informant in exchange for testimony;
• the specific statements the defendant allegedly made to the informant that will be used against the defendant;
• other cases in which the informant testified or intended to testify; and
• any case in which the informant recanted testimony against a defendant.

A prosecutor who offers any benefit or plea deal to a jailhouse informant first is required to notify any victim of a crime committed by the informant.

The bill passed on a 48-1 vote.

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