D.D.C.: Even joint venture search in Dominican Republic of a Venezuelan citizen doesn’t violate 4A

Defendant is charged with hostage taking in the Dominican Republic. Trial starts next week. He is a citizen of Venezuela in the Dominican Republic, and the search there did not violate his Fourth Amendment rights since he had no connection to the United States. “Because the joint-venture doctrine offers no help to a defendant without Fourth Amendment rights at the time of search — even if American officials played a significant role, which is at least arguable here — that path to relief is similarly blocked.” United States v. Delgado, 2023 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 213639 (D.D.C. Dec. 1, 2023).

“Defendant Trujillo explicitly requested the towing of the vehicle at multiple points during the stop, which authorized and resulted in a lawful impoundment and inventory search. While awaiting confirmation of the arrest warrant, Deputy Skroch asked Defendant Trujillo what he would like done with the vehicle in the event the warrant confirmed.” United States v. Trujillo, 2023 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 212679 (D.N.M. Nov. 29, 2023).*

Even if the officer was mistaken on one fact, there was probable cause here and the mistake was objectively reasonable. Also, the CI was adequately corroborated by additional investigation. United States v. Smith, 2023 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 213153 (E.D. Mo. Nov. 30, 2023).*

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