Initially, soliciting for prostitution and human trafficking are illegal. Occasionally, law enforcement will overstep their authority and entrap an individual in a human trafficking sting. Sometimes the government or its agents cause someone to commit an offense when the individual is not predisposed to commit the crime.
Law enforcement agents may not create a criminal offence, implant in an innocent person’s mind the disposition to commit the criminal act, and then cause the commission of the crime so that the government can prosecute that person.
What Is Entrapment
In many cases, an officer, while working in an undercover capacity, will pose as an escort or a trafficker on social media to entice a curious person to initiate a conversation. Law enforcement sometimes encourages and, as a direct result, causes a person to engage in conduct constituting a crime.
When the police cause an individual to break the law, the defense of entrapment is an issue. Law enforcement agents may not play on the weaknesses of an innocent party and influence them into committing crimes which they otherwise would not have attempted. Law enforcement officials go too far when they implant in the mind of an innocent person the disposition to commit an offense and cause its commission.
Contact a Criminal Defense Attorney to Protect Your Rights
If you or a loved one believe that you have been tricked into committing a criminal offense, you may be entitled to a hearing to establish whether you have been entrapped as a matter of law. If you or a loved one have been arrested in the Tampa Bay area and charged with human trafficking offense, an experienced criminal defense lawyer may be able to have the charges reduced or have the case dismissed, which may keep you from going to jail, and may prevent you from having a record.