New Jersey Revised Statutes § 13:1e-129 - Investigative Interrogatory

13:1E-129. Investigative interrogatory
4. a. Whenever the Attorney General determines that there exists a reasonable suspicion that any person may have information or be in possession, custody, or control of any documentary materials relevant to an investigation of an applicant, permittee or licensee conducted pursuant to this act, he may issue in writing, and cause to be served upon that person an investigative interrogatory requiring that person to answer questions under oath and produce material for examination.

b. Each interrogatory shall:

(1) Identify the licensee, permittee or applicant who is the subject of the investigation;

(2) Advise the person that he has the right to discuss the interrogatory with legal counsel prior to returning it to the Attorney General or prior to making material available, as provided in subsection f. of this section, and that he has the right to file in Superior Court a petition to modify or set aside the interrogatory, as provided in subsection j. of this section;

(3) Describe the class or classes of documentary material to be produced thereunder with sufficient particularity as to permit the material to be reasonably identified;

(4) Prescribe a return date, which date shall provide a reasonable period of time within which answers may be made and material so demanded may be assembled and made available for inspection and copying or reproduction, as provided in subsection f. of this section.

c. No interrogatory shall:

(1) Contain any requirement which would be held to be unreasonable if contained in a subpena duces tecum issued in aid of a grand jury investigation; or

(2) Require the production of any documentary evidence which would be otherwise privileged from disclosure if demanded by a subpena duces tecum issued in aid of a grand jury investigation.

d. Service of any interrogatory filed under this section may be made upon any person by:

(1) Delivering a duly executed copy thereof to the person or any partner, executive officer, managing agent, employee or general agent thereof, or to any agent thereof authorized by appointment or by law to receive service of process on behalf of the person; or

(2) Delivering a duly executed copy thereof to the principal office or place of business of the person to be served; or

(3) Depositing a copy in the United States mail, by registered or certified mail duly addressed to the person at his principal office or place of business.

e. A verified return by the individual serving any interrogatory, setting forth the manner of service, shall be prima facie proof of service. In the case of service by registered or certified mail, the return shall be accompanied by the return post office receipt of delivery of the interrogatory.

f. Any person upon whom any interrogatory issued under this section has been duly served which requires the production of materials shall make the material available for inspection and copying or reproduction to the Attorney General at the principal place of business of that person in the State of New Jersey or at any other place as the Attorney General and the person thereafter may agree and prescribe in writing, on the return date specified in the interrogatory or on a later date as the Attorney General may prescribe in writing. Upon written agreement between the person and the Attorney General, copies may be substituted for all or any part of the original materials. The Attorney General may cause the preparation of any copies of documentary material as may be required for official use by the Attorney General.

No material produced pursuant to this section shall be available for examination, without the consent of the person who produced the material, by an individual other than the Attorney General or any person retained by the Attorney General in connection with the enforcement of this act. Under reasonable terms and conditions as the Attorney General shall prescribe, documentary material while in his possession shall be available for examination by the person who produced the material or any of his duly authorized representatives.

In any investigation conducted pursuant to this act, the Attorney General may present before the department, court or grand jury any documentary material in his possession pursuant to this section, subject to any protective order deemed proper by the Superior Court.

g. Upon completion of:

(1) The review and investigation for which any documentary material was produced under this section, and

(2) Any case or proceeding arising from the investigation, the Attorney General shall return to the person who produced the material all the material, other than copies thereof made by the Attorney General pursuant to this section, which has not passed into the control of the department or any court or grand jury through the introduction thereof into the record of the case or proceeding.

h. When any documentary material has been produced by any person under this section for use in an investigation, and no case or proceeding arising therefrom has been instituted within two years after completion of the examination and analysis of all evidence assembled in the course of the investigation, the person shall be entitled, upon written demand made upon the Attorney General, to the return of all documentary material, other than copies thereof made pursuant to this section so produced by him.

i. Whenever any person fails to comply with any investigative interrogatory duly served upon him under this section, or whenever satisfactory copying or reproduction of any material cannot be done and he refuses to surrender the material, the Attorney General may file in the Superior Court a petition for an order of the court for the enforcement of this section.

j. At any time before the return date specified in the interrogatory, the person served with the interrogatory may file in the Superior Court a petition for an order modifying or setting aside the interrogatory. The time allowed for compliance with the interrogatory shall not run during the pendency of this petition. The petition shall specify each ground upon which the petition relies in seeking relief, and may be based upon any failure of the interrogatory to comply with the provisions of this section or upon any constitutional or other legal right or privilege of the petitioner. In this proceeding, the Attorney General shall establish the existence of an investigation pursuant to this act and the nature and subject matter of the investigation.

L.1983,c.392,s.4; amended 1991,c.269,s.4.

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Last modified: October 11, 2016