Nevada Defense Lawyers Explain Identification of Funds Rules

The state of Nevada has strict rules regarding when and how property can be searched. The rights of defendants must be protected when it comes to searches conducted by law enforcement because of the Fifth Amendment in the U.S. Constitution and because of protections on the state level.

Rules for searches impact many different actions that are taken by law enforcement within the state of Nevada when police interact with suspects who it is believed may have been involved in criminal activity. One such rule relates to the identification of funds.

If you are searched by police and/or if you have been accused of wrongdoing and prosecutors are attempting to use evidence against you that was obtained by the police, you should consult with experienced Las Vegas defense lawyers for assistance in ensuring that your rights were respected. If the actions of law enforcement were an unlawful violation of your privacy rights and your right to be free from unlawful searches and seizures, any information that was obtained in the unlawful search or as a result of the unlawful search may not be used against you.

LV Criminal Defense can help you to understand Nevada laws on identification of funds and can aggressively advocate on your behalf to prevent as much evidence as possible from being presented by prosecutors in a criminal case against you. If you can successfully argue against the admissibility of evidence, it may become impossible for a prosecutor to prove your guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.

Nevada Laws on Identification of Funds

Nevada’s law on Identification of Funds makes it possible for a law enforcement officer to take certain steps, under appropriate circumstances, to obtain information about a pre-paid or “stored value” card.

A pre-paid or a stored value card for purposes of this law includes any “instrument or device” that you could use in order to access funds. It also includes any instrument or device that is used to represent monetary value in a digital electronic form. It is not relevant whether the device is, or is not, encrypted or capable of storing electronic media in a way that could be either transferred or retrieved electronically.

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This means if you have a gift card or other similar type of card on your person, it is possible that a law enforcement officer will be allowed to obtain information about that card.

The law allows a law enforcement officer to take steps to obtain information about pre-paid gift cards or other stored-value cards if:

  • You have been detained as permitted by NRS 171.123. NRS 171.123 allows for your temporary detention if you are suspected of violating the terms and conditions of parole or probation or if you are reasonably suspected of engaging in criminal behavior.
  • You have been arrested on suspicion of criminal activity.
  • Law enforcement is investigating a crime that a suspect hasn’t yet been identified as committing or, if a suspect has been identified, that police do not believe is in possession or control of a pre-paid value or stored value card.
  • Police have probable cause to believe that a pre-paid or stored value card contains the proceeds from a criminal act or is being used to commit a criminal act.

If ay of these conditions exist, a law enforcement officer may follow the allowable process outlined under Nevada law in order to obtain information about a pre-paid card or stored value card.

Obtaining Information on Funds Stored on a Pre-Paid Card

According to N.R.S. 179.1152, when a law enforcement officer has the authority under the law to obtain information about a pre-paid card, the peace officer is permitted to use “an electronic device, a necessary electronic communications network or any other reasonable means” in order to obtain necessary information about the pre-paid or stored value card.

A law enforcement officer is allowed to use these devices to find out specific information as outlined by the relevant statute. For example, a peace officer can use these devices to determine the name and personal information that are associated with the card as well as the amount of funds that are associated with the pre-paid or stored value card.

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The Attorney General or the designee of the Attorney General for the state of Nevada is given the authority to enter into contracts as necessary to make it possible for law enforcement officers to obtain the information that police are permitted by N.R.S. 179.1152 to collect on pre-paid or stored cards. However, there are certain things that the Attorney General has to consider when entering into contracts that are aimed at making information accessible from pre-paid or stored value cards.

The Attorney General has to consider the functional benefit of maintaining one or more databases that are related to prepaid or stored value cards being used in connection with any possible criminal activity. The Attorney General also must think about the costs of maintaining one or more databases, as well as other factors believed to be relevant by the AG and/or by law and state law enforcement agencies. If the AG enters into a contract, the usual process for open and competitive bidding that is mandated for most government contracts is not specifically required under these circumstances.

Getting Help from Las Vegas Criminal Attorneys

Evidence obtained from a stored-value card could potentially be used against you. You want to protect your privacy as much as possible whenever police want any information from you, including details on stored-value cards. You should know your rights and what the law does, and does not, allow in interactions with the police.

A Las Vegas criminal defense lawyer can provide you with assistance if you believe that police acted unlawfully or inappropriately in any way in connection with identifying stored funds or in connection with any type of search or seizure. To find out more about how an attorney can help you with laws.