In a letter to NYPD Commissioner Ray Kelly last week, Brooklyn District Attorney Charles Hynes warned the NYPD that his office would no longer use possession of condoms as evidence of prostitution or loitering for the purpose of prostitution, the New York Times reported.
"Accordingly," Hynes reportedly wrote, "the collection and vouchering of condoms as evidence by members of your department should immediately cease."
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NYPD spokesman Paul Browne reportedly agreed on behalf of the department that "it is not necessary to seize condoms as evidence of the intent of an individual to engage in prostitution."
But he added, "We do not rule out their evidentiary value when going after pimps and sex traffickers. If there is a bowlful of condoms in a massage parlor, we want our officers to be able to seize them as evidence against the trafficker."
District attorneys in all five boroughs, including Hynes in Brooklyn, reportedly agreed that condoms as evidence of sex trafficking makes sense.
The felony charge of sex trafficking is often brought against accused pimps, the Times reported.
Prosecutors in Nassau County reportedly have the same ban on condoms as evidence, but extend their rule to traffickers.
Otherwise, Nassau Country District Attorney Kathleen Rice told the Times, "Traffickers will refuse to hand out condoms to their workers and in fact prohibit their use."
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