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Florida man faces felony sex charges


To be labeled as a sex offender is probably the worst stigma possible in our society. Allegations of sex crimes can destroy a person's reputation. In addition, of course, they carry serious penalties, including prison time. A 23-year-old man from the Pensacola area is facing these potential consequences now.

The man was arrested on felony charges after he allegedly arranged online to have sex with a 13-year-old girl. Police began an investigation after the man allegedly ran an advertisement for a female sex partner. Among other things, the ad allegedly said age was unimportant - a statement which could be interpreted in different ways and which does not necessarily mean the man was seeking sex with an underage partner at that time.

Police then made the man the focus of a sting operation. According to police allegations, an undercover officer contacted the man online and asked if he wanted to have sex with a 13-year-old girl. The man allegedly said he would. A meeting was arranged and when the accused showed up he was arrested.

In a case like this entrapment may be a possible defense. Entrapment occurs when the police persuade a citizen, who is not predisposed to commit a crime, to commit one. But if the police merely provided an opportunity to commit a crime, the defense will not work. In this case the original ad arguably did not contemplate relations with an underage partner, so the accused may be able to argue the police tempted him with something he was not predisposed to do.

Successfully asserting an entrapment defense is not easy. If the evidence appears overwhelming, the accused may still be able to negotiate a plea agreement. Either way, he needs the assistance of an experienced criminal defense attorney.

Source: Fox10tv.com, "23-year-old faces felony sex charges," Aug. 2, 2013

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