New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft may potentially have a felony charge on his hands if Florida prosecutors have their way.
The 78-year-old billionaire, who was arrested earlier this year and hit with two misdemeanor counts of soliciting prostitution at a Florida massage parlor, could face a third-degree felony in connection with that case, according to the Florida Sun-Sentinal. The charge's penalty is a possible five years in prison.
The move is unusual, according to criminal defense attorney Jack Fleischman. "I literally have never seen that enhancement used in any county,” he said. "It has to be rare."
The likelihood that the billionaire is formally charged with the felony is unlikely as the conversation about the warrant's lawfulness heats up. In May, a judge threw out the evidence police gathered against Kraft, ruling that authorities did not have a lawful "sneak-and-peek" warrant at the massage parlor.
"The 'sneak-and-peak' warrant to investigate Robert Kraft was illegal because, among other things, it didn't indicate when the hidden cameras were supposed to stop recording--including of legit spa customers," Sports Illustrated legal analyst Michael McCann tweeted Saturday. "Prosecutors now want to charge Kraft with a felony. Good luck with that."
Kraft broke his month-long silence about the incident in March.
"In deference to the judicial process, I have remained silent these past several weeks. To correct some of the misinformation surrounding this matter, my attorney made his first public comments on Friday night," he wrote in a statement. "I would like to use this opportunity to say something that I have wanted to say for four weeks: I am truly sorry. I know I have hurt and disappointed my family, my close friends, my co-workers, our fans and many others who rightfully hold me to a higher standard."