March 29, 2012
Whittel & Melton, LLC 1-866-608-5LAW (5529) – Florida Sex Crimes Attorneys
The Osceola County Sheriff’s Office recently arrested 12 people on charges of traveling to have sex with a minor.
The so-called Spring Cleaning operation involved undercover officials posing online as minors or as parents or guardians of children. The sting started March 19 and ended Sunday.
The suspects – including a man who apparently drove from New York – went to Osceola County allegedly looking to have sex with what they thought were children.
This is the second undercover sex sting operation that has taken place in Osceola this year.
Traveling to meet a minor with the intentions of having sex with a juvenile is one of the most aggressively prosecuted sex crimes in Florida. Often, this charge is combined with similar sex offenses like Internet solicitation of a minor and transmitting harmful material to a juvenile. Should you find yourself placed under arrest for traveling to meet a minor, it is extremely important to say and do nothing until you consult with a Florida Sex Crimes Lawyer. Speaking to law enforcement without legal representation could do more harm than good due to the severe penalties attached to sex crimes. Traveling to meet a minor is punishable by up to 15 years in prison and a conviction carries a mandatory minimum of 21 months.
Florida law deems it unlawful for a person to travel any distance to meet with a child for a sexual encounter following an online solicitation. In addition, traveling to meet a child after making arrangements with parents or guardians for sex online is also a crime. Undercover sex stings frequently involve undercover officials posing as decoys online as either parents or children in the hopes of drumming up conversations with unsuspecting individuals with the main goal being to get them to agree to meet a child for illegal sex acts.
It is important to realize that no case is completely hopeless. In fact, there are multiple defenses that may be applied to these serious sex offenses. The Florida Sex Crimes Lawyers at Whittel & Melton can obtain the alleged Internet conversations and review the evidence prosecutors will use against you. Through a careful analysis we can develop any possible defenses you may have against these charges.
If you or a loved one has been charged with an Internet solicitation crime in Florida, contact the Florida Sex Crimes Lawyers at Whittel & Melton online or reach us statewide and toll-free by dialing 1-866-608-5LAW (5529).