Logging onto the internet to chat with others in forums and online groups has become a way of life for many in Minnesota, and you may enjoy this activity via a home computer or a mobile device such as a smartphone or tablet. While meeting people in this manner may be harmless, there are times when a person is presenting a false identity in order to deceive you and others. At the Law Office of John J. Leunig, we have provided advice to many people who have unknowingly had interactions with law enforcement offering illegal activities online.
Performing web searches for child pornography or attempting to contact minors so you can meet and engage in illegal sexual conduct may have devastating legal consequences. Simply responding to an unsolicited offer has the potential to result in the same charges, particularly when an undercover law enforcement officer is the one making the proposition. However, there are regulations that limit how the offer is presented.
According to the U.S. Department of Justice, you may have been a victim of entrapment if you are able to demonstrate that you were not inclined on your own to perform the act. A lack of prior criminal record is not enough to prove this factor, but hesitation to accept the offer or engage with the officer may be submitted as evidence. In addition, there must be evidence that you were persuaded or coerced to engage in the activity by the official to prove entrapment. More information about child pornography is available on our web page.