Traveling To Meet A Minor
As defense lawyers, we very often have clients come into our office to tell us that they were entrapped by the police into committing a crime. Entrapment is a very complicated and difficult defense to present to a jury in a court of law, and most entrapment claims are baseless. However, police sometimes use tactics and strategies to investigate—or better yet—fabricate certain crimes. Officers have been known to set up hotel rooms with audio visual recording, fill the hotel safe with firearms and valuables and have their confidential informants recruit people off the street to commit burglaries of these locations. Police provide the targets with keys to enter the room and tell them where all the valuables are, sometimes even providing a code to the safe. When the targets remove the items from the safe, they are met by police and criminal charges of armed burglary.
More recently, police have begun to take the same tactics and apply them to sex offenses. Just like the fake burglaries, undercover detectives will fabricate situations to generate arrests for fake sex offenses such as traveling to meet a minor. In fact, as we delve into the wording of the statute, it becomes apparent that the law prohibiting traveling to meet a minor was written with police entrapment in mind, as the terms of the statute easily allow for such police tactics to be utilized. If you have been charged with traveling to meet a minor, or any sex offense, you should immediately contact a skilled Sarasota sex crimes lawyer to aid in your defense.Elements of Traveling to Meet a Minor
Traveling to meet a minor is punishable pursuant to Florida Statute 847.0135 subsection 4. The law states that Any person who travels any distance either within this state, to this state, or from this state by any means, who attempts to do so, or who causes another to do so or to attempt to do so for the purpose of engaging in any illegal act described in chapter 794, chapter 800, or chapter 827, or to otherwise engage in other unlawful sexual conduct with a child or with another person believed by the person to be a child after using a computer online service, Internet service, local bulletin board service, or any other device capable of electronic data storage or transmission to:
(a) Seduce, solicit, lure, or entice or attempt to seduce, solicit, lure, or entice a child or another person believed by the person to be a child, to engage in any illegal act described in chapter 794, chapter 800, or chapter 827, or to otherwise engage in other unlawful sexual conduct with a child; or
(b) Solicit, lure, or entice or attempt to solicit, lure, or entice a parent, legal guardian, or custodian of a child or a person believed to be a parent, legal guardian, or custodian of a child to consent to the participation of such child in any act described in chapter 794, chapter 800, or chapter 827, or to otherwise engage in any sexual conduct commits the offense of traveling to meet a minor.
Anyone convicted under this statute is guilty of a second degree misdemeanor which is punishable by up to fifteen years of imprisonment and a lifetime of reporting as a sex offender. If you are investigated or charged with this offense, you should contact a skilled Sarasota sex crimes lawyer immediately. In today’s environment of online romance, you should always be wary of meeting up with anyone for a sexual encounter without meeting them in public first. Undercover police officers will pose as underage people to lure suspects into coming to meet who they think will be a romantic partner, but who is in fact a cop. Don’t fall victim to these undercover officers.Speak to Our Lawyers Today
The attorneys at Hanlon Law have the skills and experience to defend you on even the most serious sex offenses. Call us for an appointment today at 941.462.1789.