What is entrapment in Florida?

Entrapment occurs when law enforcement coerces, persuades, or induces someone to commit a crime s/he would not normally commit. Entrapment is an unlawful tactic, and you might be able to use it as a defense if you believe law enforcement collected the evidence against you as a result of the entrapment.

If you have been charged with a crime, call Goldman Wetzel in St. Petersburg to discuss your case and possible defenses that might be effective given your circumstances: 727-828-3900.

What is entrapment?

Entrapment is an affirmative defense that defendants and/or lawyers can use in various types of criminal cases in Florida, including sex crimes, drug crimes, and white collar crimes.

Florida Statute § 777.201(1) defines entrapment:

A law enforcement officer, a person engaged in cooperation with a law enforcement officer, or a person acting as an agent of a law enforcement officer perpetrates an entrapment if, for the purpose of obtaining evidence of the commission of a crime, he or she induces or encourages and, as a direct result, causes another person to engage in conduct constituting such crime by employing methods of persuasion or inducement…

To prove an entrapment defense, we must be able to show that:

  • Law enforcement officers (or an informant) encouraged you to engage in criminal conduct for the purposes of obtaining evidence against you;
  • You engaged in criminal conduct as a result of the officer’s encouragement;
  • The officer used methods of persuasion to create a high risk that you would commit a crime; and
  • You were not predisposed to commit the crime.

Examples of Cases Involving Entrapment

Entrapment is not the same as opportunity. The courts expect people to resist normal temptations to engage in criminal activity. If an undercover officer poses as a prostitute, for example, that is not entrapment under the law. There is no coercion, threats, promises, or trickery; it is just an opportunity that law-abiding citizens would turn down.

However, if the agent tells you that her procurer will injure you if you do not hire her for the night, that is entrapment.

Entrapment can also include scenarios such as:

  • An undercover officer who tricks you into delivering drugs for him.
  • An agent who wears down and eventually convinces someone with a legal prescription for Xanax to sell the drugs to him by saying he needs the pills for his mom who is gravely ill.

Schedule a Free Consultation with a Goldman Wetzel Criminal Defense Lawyer

If you have been arrested for a crime, entrapment may be a viable defense, but we need to carefully assess your case and make sure it is the right approach. Call our office to speak to someone about your case. Our defense attorneys at Goldman Wetzel have represented people charged with all types of crimes in St. Petersburg, helping them fight their charges and protect their rights.

Contact us now at 727-828-3900 so we can get started on your case.

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