Tustin Solicitation of a Minor Defense Attorney
What Is Solicitation of a Minor?
California Penal Code Section 288.4 defines solicitation of a minor as arranging a meeting with a minor under 18 years old for the purpose of engaging in unlawful sexual activity. It is important to note that you can be charged under PC Section 288.4 even if the alleged victim is not a minor and no sexual activity occurs. In these cases, the prosecution can charge you based on intent if you believed the person to be a minor and arranged a meeting for illegal sex anyway.
Often, the arrangement with the alleged victim occurs over the Internet or phone. As such, sting operations have become more common, where undercover police officers pretend to be minors and invite you to meet to engage in sexual acts. If you agree to meet, the officer can then arrest you and charge you with solicitation of a minor because you intended to commit the crime.
Sex crimes involving minors are taken very seriously, and you may be facing harsh legal penalties if you are charged with solicitation of a minor in Tustin. In addition to being charged by the Tustin prosecutor, you can also be charged by the federal government depending on the circumstances of your case. If you are convicted, you may spend decades in prison and be required to register as a sex offender for life. As such, you need a skilled defense attorney who can aggressively fight these accusations on your behalf.
Tustin Prosecution for Solicitation of a Minor
PC Section 288.4 can be charged as either a misdemeanor or felony depending on your criminal history and the circumstances surrounding your case. However, felony charges are strongly pursued in Tustin in order to deter future crimes. In order to convict you of solicitation of a minor, the prosecution must prove the following:
- You arranged a meeting with a minor or person you believed to be a minor for the purpose of:
- Exposing your genitals, pubic, or rectal area
- Having the child expose his/her genitals, public, or rectal area
- Engaging in lewd or lascivious behavior
- You were motivated by an unnatural or abnormal sexual interest in children.
Federal Prosecution for Solicitation of a Minor
Under US Code Sections 2422 and 2423, the Attorney General can also charge you with a federal crime for solicitation of a minor. To convict you, the federal prosecutor must prove that you committed one of the following acts:
- You knowingly persuaded, induced, enticed, or coerced a minor (or attempted to) to travel between states or countries in order to engage in illegal sexual activity.
- You used the mail, Internet, or any means of interstate/international commerce to knowingly persuade, induce, entice, or coerce a minor to engage in illegal sexual activity.
- You knowingly transported a minor between states or countries to engage in illegal sexual activity.
- You traveled between states or countries to engage in illegal sexual activity with a minor.
Solicitation of a Minor Penalties
As stated above, whether you are charged with a misdemeanor or felony depends on your criminal history and the facts of your case. If you have a prior conviction for a sex crime, the prosecutor may decide to charge you with a felony. Similarly, if you actually showed up for the meeting with the minor, the prosecution will likely pursue a felony charge. In either case, you should consult with the experienced defense attorneys at Wallin & Klarich to see how we can help get your charges reduced or dismissed before you even go to court.
For a misdemeanor conviction, you may face the following penalties in Tustin:
- Up to 1 year in county jail
- Up to $5,000 in fines
- Misdemeanor probation
- Sex offender registration for at least 10 years
For a felony conviction, you may face the following penalties in Tustin:
- 2, 3, or 4 years in state prison
- Up to $10,000 in fines
- Felony probation
- Lifetime sex offender registration
If you are convicted on the federal level, the penalties are more severe. For a federal conviction, you may face the following penalties:
- Up to 20 years in prison for knowingly persuading or coercing a minor to travel between states or countries in order to engage in illegal sexual activity
- Up to a life sentence in prison for using mail, Internet, or any means of interstate/international commerce to knowingly persuade or coerce a minor to engage in illegal sexual activity
- Up to a life sentence in prison for knowingly transported a minor between states or countries to engage in illegal sexual activity
- Up to 30 years in prison for traveling between states or countries to engage in illegal sexual activity with a minor
- Lifetime sex offender registration
Personal and Professional Consequences
In addition to jail time and sex offender registration, a conviction for solicitation of a minor in Tustin could jeopardize your personal and professional life. Sex offender registration can hold negative impacts on future employment opportunities, as background checks will reveal your conviction to potential employers. A solicitation of a minor charge may also be a barrier in attaining professional licenses such as childcare, teaching, medicine, and law. Even if you are found not guilty, the mere accusation of a sex crime could destroy your relationships. To clear your name and prevent these charges from ruining your future, consult with our experts at Wallin & Klarich soon after your arrest. When you choose Wallin & Klarich, we will listen to your side of the story without judgment and build a strong defense to persuade the court of your innocence.
Defenses for Solicitation of a Minor
If you are accused of solicitation of a minor in Tustin, you may feel lost. Having a skilled defense attorney on your side can help you get back on your feet and have a second chance at life. For over 40 years, our attorneys at Wallin & Klarich have helped many clients successfully defend against solicitation of a minor accusations. Some of the effective defenses that we have employed include the following.
Entrapment occurs when a police officer pressures or convinces a defendant to commit a crime in their presence. These operations are especially common in sex crimes. For example, if an undercover police officer posed as a minor and contacted you multiple times to pressure you into meeting, then you may be able to use entrapment as a defense. However, not all undercover operations constitute entrapment, and remember, simply presenting an opportunity to participate in criminal activity is not entrapment. If you feel like someone is trying to convince or pressure you to commit a crime, it is best to walk away from the situation and report it to law enforcement.
Good Faith Belief of Age
If you reasonably believed that the alleged victim was over 18 years old, your attorney may be able to argue the good faith belief of age defense on your behalf. For instance, if you talked to a minor online who pretended to be 18 years old, you and your attorney have the burden of establishing reasonable proof that you believed the person to be an adult. This refutes the necessary element of intent that the prosecution must prove.
The allegations against you could be completely false. If this is the case, our lawyers will look into the circumstances of your case and locate evidence to support your side. For example, if you talked to a minor online who pretend to be over 18 years old, and her parents file a false police report against you in order to clear themselves of personal responsibility, we can use the messages to prove that you had no intention of pursuing sexual acts with a minor. Our team will fight to prove your innocence and drop the charges against you.
Hiring a Tustin Defense Attorney | How We Can Help You
When you are facing serious criminal charges in Tustin, you need a skilled attorney with a history of success in the courtroom. At Wallin & Klarich, we believe in four key aspects that set us apart from other firms:
40+ Years of Experience Defending Solicitation of a Minor Charges
With over 40 years of experience and offices throughout Southern California, our attorneys at Wallin & Klarich know the best strategies to use in the courtroom based on the specific details of each case. Our lawyers know how to use the most successful defense methods in even the toughest situations, often getting cases completely dismissed so that our clients have total relief. We are also familiar with the Southern California courts, having offices in Orange County, Riverside, San Bernardino, Victorville, Torrance, West Covina, Los Angeles, and San Diego. This allows us the additional advantage of knowing local prosecutors and judges. You, as our client, will undoubtedly benefit from our resources and knowledge.
24/7 Communication with Your Attorney
We believe that communication and transparency are the foundation of success here at Wallin & Klarich. We guarantee that we will always be open and honest in our communications, and we are never more than a phone call or email away. We want to keep you updated on the details of your case and take time to listen to and address your concerns. With 24/7 open lines of communication, our attorneys are always here when you need us.
Track Record of Success
Our staff has a proven track record of success with thousands of clients spanning over 40 years. Because of the stigma of solicitation of a minor charges and the potential for serious repercussions, you need a qualified and experienced defense attorney to help you achieve redress. We want you to be just as confident in our abilities, so we invite you to look at some of our clients’ success stories and big wins in the courtroom.
Reputation and Credibility
It can be challenging to choose the right law firm to defend you. Because our clients know we are committed to them, Wallin & Klarich has been a well-respected firm in the Southern California community for many years. Our team will continue to serve our community with integrity and excellence, and we hope that you will give us the chance to defend you as well.
Discover how our skilled negotiators can help you with your solicitation of a minor charge. Contact us today, toll-free at (877) 4-NO-JAIL or (877) 466-5245 for a free consultation with a skilled defense attorney.