Online sex sting operations are increasingly common in the state of Florida. In these undercover operations, law enforcement officers go online and pretend to be a minor. They intend to find predators hoping to meet children for sexual encounters. When the person shows up, the police arrest them.
Unfortunately, even police officers with good intentions and a desire to catch sex predators are not immune from legal problems with Sarasota online sex sting operations. If you were charged with a crime related to an online sex sting, you need a solid legal defense.
Erika Valcarcel, Criminal Defense Lawyer, P.A., could help you clear your name and avoid penalties for sex sting-related criminal charges
Entrapment and Online Sex Stings in Sarasota
Online sex sting operations are a cause for concern due to entrapment. Entrapment occurs when police entice an otherwise law-abiding citizen to commit a crime. The problem is not police attempting to arrest would-be predators. It lies with law enforcement, who will go to lengths to make an arrest, even if no one committed a crime.
Examples of Entrapment
There have been reported cases of people who repeatedly turned away communication attempts by the “intended minor victim,” only to give in later and show up for a meeting. There are also situations in which adults have no intention of engaging in sexual encounters. Instead, they hoped to help misguided youth turn their lives around.
To have these intentions misrepresented can be ruinous for those arrested with an online sex sting.
How a Sarasota Sex Crimes Lawyer Can Help You
Falsely accused people still face severe penalties for sex sting charges. Even these accusations are enough to destroy a person’s reputation. A conviction will be worse.
A Sarasota sex crimes lawyer can help you fight these common charges resulting from a sex sting operation:
- Traveling to meet a minor
- Lewd and lascivious battery
- Production, possession, and distribution of child porn
- Solicitation of a minor with lewd and lascivious conduct
- Solicitation of a minor using a computer or electronic device
These are only a few of the sex crimes you could face from a Sarasota online sex sting operation. Building a solid defense is critical if you hope to avoid severe penalties, including prison time and sex offender registration.
Entrapment Is a Viable Defense
Entrapment is the most common defense used in sex sting operations. To win your case using the entrapment defense, we will need to prove that you would never have committed a crime had police not enticed you to act. We also must show that you did not know that the person you talked to online was a minor.
The communication transcript between you and the police may benefit your case. Your lawyer will want a copy of the online conversation to help your defense if:
- You perceived threats from police that forced you to commit a crime
- You tried to end the conversation or stop communicating
- You demonstrated an unwillingness to go along with their proposed meeting
On the other hand, a transcript of your online chat with an undercover officer might not help your case, or you might not want the transcript to go public. A sex crimes lawyer in Sarasota can help you work with the prosecutor to obtain a plea agreement.
Get Help From a Sex Crimes Lawyer in Sarasota Today
Have you been arrested and charged with a crime after an online sex sting? It would be best not to risk your future and freedom with a public defender or try to defend yourself.
Get help clearing your name. Call an experienced Sarasota sex crimes lawyer today. Erika Valcarcel, Criminal Defense Lawyer, P.A., can help you avoid the harsh penalties associated with online sex stings.View All Blogs