KARLSRUHE (dpa-AFX) - Data from a falsely ordered radio cell search may not be used as evidence in court proceedings. This was stated by the Federal Court of Justice (BGH) in a decision published on Wednesday (case no. 2 StR 171/23). For a convicted thief from Hesse, this increases the chances of a more lenient sentence, as the Frankfurt am Main Regional Court had essentially based its ruling in one case on the defendant's whereabouts within the radio cell close to the crime scene.

According to the highest criminal court judges in Karlsruhe, a radio cell search under Section 100g of the Code of Criminal Procedure may only be ordered if there is suspicion of a particularly serious crime. There is a catalog of specifically named crimes such as aggravated gang theft, murder or high treason. In this case, however, the investigators had not considered any of the accusations listed there, meaning that the location data should not have been collected at all, according to the Federal Court of Justice. The guilty verdict should therefore be set aside for the case for which the plaintiff had been convicted primarily on the basis of the findings from the data analysis.

In June 2022, the regional court had sentenced the defendant to two years and three months' imprisonment for theft with weapons, among other things. According to the Federal Court of Justice, it had used further evidence in addition to the traffic data collected - such as a deposit into his bank account in the amount of 297.11 euros, which almost corresponded to the amount of coins and cash stolen during a theft the day before. However, the decision of the Federal Court of Justice goes on to say: "Irrespective of this circumstantial evidence, the Senate cannot rule out the possibility that the Regional Court would have reached a more favorable evidentiary result for the defendant without the use of the radio cell data."/kre/DP/men