California Entrapment Law & Defense
To entrap another person means to induce another person to commit a crime that they would not ordinarily be inclined to commit.
Entrapment by police is a defense to many California crimes. If the defendant is found to have been entrapped by the police a criminal defense attorney may have his or her client acquitted of the criminal charges.
Entrapment occurs when law enforcement overreaches in their efforts to catch criminals. For example, if law enforcement places scantily clad undercover officers posing as prostitutes on a street corner and the prostitutes (undercover officers) flag down an unsuspecting passerby for the purpose of catching defendants who are lured in to propositioning the undercover officers this could amount to entrapment if the unsuspecting passerby is not ordinarily predisposed to picking up prostitutes.
For entrapment defense to work the defendant must not be predisposed to commit the alleged criminal act. For example, even if law enforcement set up a prostitution sting operation as described above, the defendant may not use the defense of entrapment if the defendant has a criminal history for picking up prostitutes because the defendant will be found to be predisposed to picking up prostitutes and it would not have mattered if the police overreached in the efforts to catch criminals.
Procedurally, the way entrapment defense works is that the defendant admits that he or she committed the underlying crime. Thereafter, the defense puts on evidence that the police over-reached in their efforts to catch criminals to the point that the police actually caused or encouraged the crime itself. If the defendant successfully proves that the police entrapped the defendant then the district attorney may rebut the entrapment evidence by demonstrating that the defendant was predisposed to commit the crime.
The defendant has the burden of proving entrapment by a preponderance of the evidence. This means that the defendant must show more likely than not that he or she was entrapped. Ordinarily, the defendant has the right to remain silent through every stage of a criminal case, including trial; but, if the defendant claims that he or she is entrapped he or she must put on at least some evidence of the facts that lead to his or her entrapment.
The most common crimes where the defense of entrapment is used include drug crimes, prostitution crimes, conspiracy crimes, traffic offenses, and illegal gaming and gambling. The defense of entrapment may apply to infractions, misdemeanors, and felonies in California.
As stated, if the defendant is found to have been entrapped by the police he or she is entitled to an acquittal of the criminal charges.
If you have been charged with any traffic infraction, misdemeanor, or felony in California and you believe that you may have been entrapped by the police, call criminal defense attorney Christopher Dorado today.
Attorney Dorado represents defendants who are charged with any criminal offense in California, including major complex felonies, and consultations are provided to clients by one of our experienced criminal defense attorneys at no cost to the accused or his or her family.
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