Due to the sensitive nature of enticement charges, those accused may feel pressure to accept a plea and get their trial over with as soon as possible. Unfortunately this is not always in the defendant’s best interest. Below, a DC federal child enticement lawyer discusses the various factors to consider before accepting a plea and what kind of pleas may be offered. To discuss your case, call and schedule a consultation with an attorney today.
First of all, there is a mandatory minimum 10-year sentence charged under 18 USC 2422b. So if you’re pleading guilty to that, you understand that the judge doesn’t really have any discretion. The judge has to send you to jail for 10 years. That is not good. If you are pleading guilty to that, you need to think long and hard about it first.
As an attorney who has experience dealing with these cases, what you’re going to do along with your client, is dissect the communications that led to the arrest. That is a huge, huge factor in these cases because a lot of times, the government will over reach in the enticement contract and they will charge the case where the elements of persuasion, inducement, coercion, or enticement have not been met.
We’ve had success in getting some of these counts dismissed before a trial or forcing the government to offer a guilty plea to a much, much lesser offense where the maximum penalty is 3 years, not a mandatory minimum of 10.
We have also had success where a person starting out charged with enticement but ended up pleading guilty to something where they ended up serving a minimal amount of time in jail. That’s where you really have to dissect those online communications or other communication to see if it even meets the element of what enticement is.
There is almost no circumstance where an experienced attorney would ever recommend plea bargaining without legal representation. This should not be done. It would be a proposition with a very high likelihood of terrible consequences. You need a lawyer to work with you in these cases. The level of experience that you need to deal with these types of cases is very, very high. There are a whole gamut of possible resolutions for these cases ranging from pleading guilty to a very serious charge to outright dismissal. So again, that’s why you really need a lawyer there to help you dissect the government’s evidence if it does not bring your own evidence in the equation to get the best result possible.
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