Following an undercover police investigation that resembled a Dateline type sting, deputies in Florida arrested 21 men and one woman, ages from 20 to 59, according to a New York Criminal Lawyer. The arrests are the fruition of a week long investigation that brought individuals from different parts of the state for the sole purpose of having sex with 14-year old boys and girls.
The sheriff’s office used undercover officers that posed as 14-year old children online and included age-regressed photographs of the undercover officers, a Brooklyn Criminal Lawyer was told. The deputies communicated with the suspects electronically via email, instant messages, and over the phone. The individuals are those who responded to ads placed by deputies on Craigslist. The Sheriff’s Office also worked closely with the State Attorney’s office, so that any legal issues that can often arise due to the nature of these types of investigations, most notably entrapment, could be avoided.
Following the arrests, the County Sheriff stated that he did hate to say that the investigation was fruitful. He also asked just how many more of these child predators are loose on the children in Florida that they are unaware. In the Sheriff’s own words, “The sheriffs of this state are tired of it.”
Many of those arrested do not have a criminal record. According to the arrest reports, when deputies entered the home many of the suspects attempted to run away. Deputies also wrote in their reports that one individual wailed loudly as he was being handcuffed. The woman is reported to have told deputies that she was only there to try to talk the 14-year old girl out of participating in the sex. According to the Sheriff, each of the individuals involved had been given the opportunity to either participate or not, and it is apparent to him that everyone who was present when his deputies raided the home were knowing and willing participants who had come for one reason—to have sex with a child.
In total, deputies filed 50 felony and three misdemeanor charges against those involved and their bonds totaled in excess of $1.2 million.
Sex crime charges are serious, and whether you are guilty or not, can have long lasting consequences. These charges can impact your personal relationships, your employment, and much more.
When your future is riding on the criminal lawyer, you choose, you owe it to yourself to retain an attorney who will aggressively defend your rights. Speak to Stephen Bilkis and Associates for advice and guidance.