Laws on Solicitation of Minors

Laws on Solicitation of Minors

Dec 29

The crime of “solicitation of a minor,” also known as child enticement, is the act of deliberately inviting, persuading or enticing a child below the age of 16, to enter any form of dwelling, such as a home, a vehicle, or an office, for the purpose of engaging in a sexual activity, including fondling, sodomy, molestation, sexual assault or sexual intercourse. Actually, the mere attempt to solicit or entice a child below 16 years old, even if the act is never carried out, can still result to solicitation charges.

Many states prosecute sex crimes against minors very aggressively. Being a felony offense, those convicted can face up to 20 years imprisonment, up to $15,000 in fines and, possibly, lifetime mandatory registration as a sex offender.

According to the United States Department of Justice, Section 2422(a) and (b) of Title 18 of the United States Code says that anyone can be charged with solicitation of a minor on the following grounds:

  • Knowingly persuading, inducing, enticing, or coercing any individual to travel in interstate or foreign commerce, or in any territory or possession of the United States, for the purpose of engaging in prostitution, or in any sexual activity for which any person can be charged with a criminal offense. Those who attempt (to persuade, induce, etc.) also be charged with the same offense and fined and/or imprisoned for not more than 20 years; and,
  • Using the mail or any facility or means of interstate or foreign commerce, or within the special maritime and territorial jurisdiction of the United States, knowingly persuades, induces, entices, or coerces any individual who has not attained the age of 18 years, to engage in prostitution or any sexual activity for which any person can be charged with a criminal offense, or attempts to do so, shall be fined under this title and imprisoned not less than 10 years or for life.”

Any person can face the same felony charge even if the act is committed through the use of a computer or through any online or electronic means, including conversations via emails or text messages, or even if the alleged victim was a police officer posing as a minor so long as the alleged offender thought he or she was speaking with a minor.

According to a Nashville sex crime defense attorney, sex offenses where the victim is a child are among the most complex and challenging criminal cases to defend. It may be absolutely necessary for a person charged to have an experienced, tough, effective criminal defense attorney on his/her defense.

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