Internet Sting Cases on the Rise

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Major Problems with Minors
Over the last five years, it seems you can’t go a week without reading or hearing about an Internet sex sting. A sex sting was run in Volusia County Florida that resulted in the arrest of both men and women. A sex sting was run in Volusia County Florida that resulted in the arrest of both men and women. Another Internet Sting was run in Bradenton and Palmetto with multiple arrests. The truth is that there are predators out there, but they are the police, preying on young gullible men who answer social media ads thinking they are talking to adults. It is far easier for the police to run one sting and arrest twenty unsuspecting men for traveling to meet a minor that it is for them to catch the real pedophiles. An arrest for traveling to meet a minor or solicitation of a minor is a major huge problem. Everyone assumes the worst and assumes you are guilty. Generally high bonds are set, people lose their jobs and many times the families abandon them. Many times these men are victims themselves of police entrapment.
As a sex crime lawyer, I have now handled cases in Lee, Sarasota, Manatee, Hillsborough, Pinellas, Seminole, Brevard and Polk County. The pattern is always the same although in recent months the police tactics have changed a little. Many times, the police post ads on Craigslist in the casual encounters section for “women seeking men”. In recent months the police seem to be focusing on “men seeking men”. The police now candidly admit that they lie when they post the ads in adult sites. The undercover officers will usually in the first few chats say something like, “I lied, I am really 14 but I am mature for my age”. They then with seductive emails, texts and chat will try and lure and entice the person into traveling to meet them either at a house of nearby convenience store. Although they claim that the person arrested is doing the luring, seducing and enticing, most of the time it is the police that bring up sex. It is the police that invite travel. It is the police that say bring condoms and it is the police that are really doing the seducing. The general public has no idea of what the police are really doing and usually after the Sting, the local sheriff goes on television with his spin version of how he is keeping his County safe. This is the ultimate lie. If a loved one has been arrested in one of these stings, do not assume they are guilty of Internet solicitation. Nothing is worse than being falsely accused of committing a sex crime. There are defenses to these entrapment cases but it takes an attorney that knows the ropes, knows what the police are really doing and knows how to defend it. If you or a loved one have been arrested, you can call my office or visit my site at sarasotadefender.com or aikenandohalloran.com for more information. Sarasota 941-366-3506 Fort Myers 239-334-8890