Luring A Minor For Sexual Exploitation
Regardless of if you are in the Phoenix area, or somewhere else in the state of Arizona, according to A.R.S. 13-3554 Luring a Minor for Sexual Exploitation in Arizona, takes place if a person actually “lures” or they offer sex to a person knowing or having a reason to know that the person is a minor.
In most cases, an arrest will occur if an undercover police officer pretends they are a female who is 14 or under in a chat room on the internet. The officer works to make contact with a defendant and will then engage in a conversation that is sexual in nature. Usually, the officer will request some type of photo be emailed to them, and they may even email the individual back with a photo of a fake 14-year-old.
At this point, the officer will attempt to set up a meeting at a fast food restaurant for a certain time. When the defendant arrives, the undercover officers will be there and arrest the individual.
One of the first things that you should do when it comes to hiring facing any type of sex crime charge is to hire an attorney. Keep in mind, not just any attorney will do. You need an attorney, such as our law team, who has extensive experience in this area of law and that can help you achieve the desired outcome for your case. In the long run, this will help you achieve the best outcome possible for the situation and ensure you get the best defense available.
Possible Consequences For Luring A Minor For Purposes Of Sexual Exploitation
When it comes to this crime, the potential consequences include the following:
- First offense class: This will result in the individual being charged with a class three felony. Punishment may be probation, along with zero to one year in jail, or prison time of two to eight-and-three-quarters years.
- Individuals with one allegeable historical previous conviction: If this is the case, then the “prison only” range is between three and a half years to 16 and one-quarter years.
- Individuals with two allegeable historical previous convictions: In this situation, the range for prison time is from seven and a half years to 25 years in jail.
If there is a situation where an actual minor is lured, not an undercover police officer, and the minor is 15 years of age, or under, this is considered a DCAC, or Dangerous Crime Against Children. This carries the punishment minimums/maximums for each conviction of – five years minimum in jail, 10 years presumptive in prison, 15 years as a maximum amount of time to be incarcerated.
If a person is convicted of even one previous felony, then the punishment range increases to be a minimum of eight years, presumptive of 15 years and maximum of 22 years.
Due to the fact that this is a DCAC charge, the defendant is required to complete 100% of the total prison time before even being considered for release. Also, if the person has been convicted of two counts, then they have to run the punishments consecutive to one another, which means the minimum would now be 10 years, with all other ranges also doubling.
Also, after being convicted of this crime, you must register as a sex offender, which is something that will remain on your record for the rest of your life. This registration means you are not permitted to have any type of contact with anyone who is under the age of 18 – including your own children – without first going through several testing procedures and after the consent of your probation officer has been given.
Potential Defenses For These Charges
There are quite a few defendants who believe that they will not be convicted of this crime unless the supposed “victim” is really a minor. Unfortunately, according to the statute, the “victim” doesn’t actually have to be a minor.
This means, if you are facing these charges, you can still be convicted of the crime even if the individual you are speaking with an actual adult. As a result, the majority of defenses related to luring a minor for sexual exploitation will involve the ability to demonstrate that the defendant had no intent to actually follow through with the suspected sexual act.
It is only possible for the prosecution to successfully get the conviction if they have proof that the defendant actually lured the minor in question for the sex act and that it wasn’t for another reason, such as friendship. The potential evidence that is used to demonstrate that there was a lack of sexual exploitation intent is if the defendant had a condom on their person, if they were carrying a large amount of cash, if they brought any type of present or gift and the detail in the emails that referred to any type of sexual activity.
Also, the attorney hired will be prepared if the prosecution of the case makes the decision to place additional charges against the defendant for other crimes. In most cases, when someone is arrested for the aforementioned crime, the police will work to secure a search warrant right away after the person has been arrested. Then, the police will travel to the person’s home or work and confiscate computers and other electronic devices. They will also search for passwords and the IP address for the computer in question.
Before doing any of this, the police will also clone the hard drive to avoid accusations that the computer was tampered with and that the images were added after the fact. When searching the computer, the police will actively search for any communication that occurred between a child and the defendant, along with child pornography that may be kept on the computer. If any of this is found, then another crime may be added to the list of charges that the individual is facing.
Understanding Denial Of The Right To Counsel
In these types of cases, a common defense that is used is the denial of the right to counsel. This may take place if an individual has been taken into custody and they request to speak to their lawyer, but they are subsequently denied, and the questioning continues. Some of the other defenses that may be used include an attorney challenging the validity of a search warrant if there were any type of “forensic flaws” that took place during the investigation process and others.
Based on anything else that you have been charged with, your defenses may also include exposing a flawed procedure in relation to the urine, breath or blood testing, DNA testing, fingerprints analysis, and the cloning or computer analysis procedures that were used.
The last defense and perhaps the most common tactic used in these types of cases is when the defense works to expose the misleading or sloppy police reports. This can include any and everything from false statements, misstatements, a flawed photo line up and even the inaccurate reconstruction of a crime scene.
Hiring An Attorney For Assistance
If you are facing these charges or any similar charges, then the best thing you can do is to hire a quality defense attorney. Keep in mind, not all attorneys will have experience with these types of cases, which means you need to find someone who does.
At the Cates & Garvey Law Group, you will find that our team of attorneys and our entire legal staff have extensive knowledge and experience in these fields. This means that we can provide the representation your case needs and deserves. We are here to help those facing serious charges and ensure they get the quality defense needed to protect their life and their ability to remain out of jail.
When you contact our law office, you will discover that we already handle a high percentage of “sex crime cases. As a result, we are uniquely qualified to represent you and help you achieve the best possible outcome for your case and situation. Our attorneys are highly trained in both forensic and clinical interviewing techniques used with children, as well as their families. As a result, we have the ability to question detectives, as well as other mental health professionals who have actually interviewed an alleged victim. If we find that the interview process was not handled in a proper way, then we can work to show that the detective handling the questioning of the child actually “led” the individual to provide the answers they were looking for. We will make sure that this is not able to be used against you when your case goes to trial.