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Arrested in Sarasota's Latest Sex Sting?

The Sarasota County Sheriff's Office recently arrested 30 people in a sting called "Operation Intercept II." Most of the subjects arrested were charged with Traveling to Solicit a Child to Commit a Sex Act (847.0135(4)(a) and Obscene Communication or Use of a Computer to Solicit a Parent to Commit a Sex Act (847.0135(3)(b). The vast majority of those arrested had little to no sexually related criminal history.

The punishment in Florida for victimless sex crimes involving sex stings can be quite severe. Often the state will seek lengthy prison sentences and a lifetime registration as a sexual offender. Nevertheless, there are tactics and strategies that can be used in defense. Oftentimes victimless sex crimes contain elements of law enforcement entrapment and coercion. This may result in motions to dismiss due to entrapment or motions to dismiss coerced statements and admissions. In addition (and of particular concern to those with no sexually deviant criminal history) expert psychologists can be employed to conduct psychosexual evaluations to determine, among other things, the risk of recidivism.

The question becomes, to what degree did law enforcement entice, entrap, or confuse the subject into committing the alleged crime? Did the subject display a propensity to commit the alleged crime or was the idea advanced by law enforcement? Did the subject believe that the proposed sex would actually involve adults? Did law enforcement spend an inordinate amount of time trying to convince the individual to follow through with the supposed crime?

The attorneys at Soler and Slack, P.A have both prosecuted those accused of victimless sex crimes and defended them. For a free consultation and case evaluation call (941) 444-5128.

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