MASSIAH V. UNITED STATES, 377 U. S. 201 (1964)

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U.S. Supreme Court

Massiah v. United States, 377 U.S. 201 (1964)

Massiah v. United States

No. 199

Argued March 3, 1964

Decided May 18, 1964

377 U.S. 201


Government agents, while continuing to investigate narcotics activities including those of petitioner, who had retained a lawyer and was free on bail after indictment, without petitioner's knowledge, secured an alleged confederate's consent to install a radio transmitter in the latter's automobile. An agent was thereby enabled to overhear petitioner's damaging statements which, despite his objection, were used in the trial which resulted in his conviction.

Held: Incriminating statements thus deliberately elicited by federal agents from the petitioner, in the absence of his attorney, deprived the petitioner of his right to counsel under the Sixth Amendment; therefore such statements could not constitutionally be used as evidence against him in his trial. Pp. 201-207.

307 F.2d 62, reversed.

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