2017 Florida Statutes
Witnesses and evidence.
Witnesses and evidence.
527.16 Witnesses and evidence.—
(1) As to the subject of any examination or investigation being conducted by the department, or an examiner appointed by it, the department may administer oaths, examine and cross-examine witnesses, and receive oral and documentary evidence and shall have the power to subpoena witnesses, compel their attendance and testimony, and require by subpoena the production of documents or other evidence which it deems relevant to the inquiry.
(2) If any person refuses to comply with such subpoena or to testify as to any relevant matter, the Circuit Court of Leon County, or the circuit court of the county wherein such examination or investigation is being conducted or wherein such person resides, on the department’s application, may issue an order requiring such person to comply with the subpoena and to testify. Any failure to obey such an order of the court may be punished by the court as a contempt thereof.
(3) Subpoenas shall be served and proof of such service made in the same manner as if issued by a circuit court. Witness fees and mileage if claimed shall be allowed the same as for testimony in a circuit court.
(4) Any person willfully testifying falsely under oath as to any matter material to any such examination, investigation, or hearing shall, upon conviction thereof, be guilty of perjury and shall be punished accordingly.
(5) If any person asks to be excused from attending or testifying or from producing any documents or other evidence in connection with any examination, hearing, or investigation being conducted on the ground that the testimony or evidence required may tend to incriminate him or her or subject him or her to a penalty or forfeiture and shall notwithstanding be directed to give such testimony or produce such evidence, he or she shall, if so directed by the department and the Department of Legal Affairs, nonetheless comply with such direction. The person shall not thereafter be prosecuted or subjected to any penalty or forfeiture for or on account of any transaction, matter, or thing concerning which he or she may have testified or produced evidence, and no testimony given or evidence produced shall be received against him or her in any criminal action, investigation, or proceeding. However, no person so testifying shall be exempt from prosecution or punishment for any perjury committed by him or her in such testimony, and the testimony or evidence given or produced shall be admissible against him or her in any criminal action, investigation, or proceeding concerning such perjury; nor shall the person be exempt from the refusal, suspension, or revocation of any license, permission, or authority conferred or to be conferred pursuant to this chapter.
(6) Any such individual may execute, acknowledge, and file in the office of the department a statement expressly waiving such immunity or privilege in respect to any transaction, matter, or thing specified in such statement; and thereupon the testimony of such individual or such evidence in relation to such transaction, matter, or thing may be received or produced before any judge or justice, court, tribunal, grand jury, or otherwise; and, if so received or produced, such individual shall not be entitled to any immunity or privileges on account of any testimony he or she may so give or evidence so produced.
(7) Any person who refuses or fails without lawful cause to testify relative to the affairs of any person, when subpoenaed and requested by the department to so testify, is guilty of a misdemeanor of the second degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.083.
History.—s. 1, ch. 61-158; ss. 11, 13, 35, ch. 69-106; s. 511, ch. 71-136; s. 3, ch. 76-168; s. 1, ch. 77-457; s. 21, ch. 78-95; ss. 16, 18, 19, ch. 81-175; ss. 2, 3, ch. 81-318; ss. 1, 2, ch. 82-6; ss. 2, 3, ch. 87-34; s. 4, ch. 91-429; s. 728, ch. 97-103.