Did you know that entrapment is one of the oldest recorded defenses? According to the Bible, when God accused Eve of consuming the forbidden fruit, she objected, “The serpent beguiled me, and I did eat.”
What is entrapment defense? What does the term mean? And what are the ramifications of the charge if it was simply the result of entrapment?
The entrapment defense applies to those who commit a crime after being coerced by law enforcement officers. Read on to know more about criminal entrapment.
What Is Entrapment?
Entrapment occurs when someone sets you up to be caught “red-handed.” If you commit a crime through entrapment the question is what the authorities can do with that information?
Entrapment is a moral gray area. That is because it is possible to alter conversations to make it appear as though someone did something wrong. That is in addition to the fact that they can twist statements to harm their target.
Opportunity vs Entrapment
The critical point of entrapment is that Government officials do not lure defendants into committing a crime by allowing them to do so.
Judges anticipate that people would avoid the common desire to break the rules. Entrapment occurs when government officials engage in despicable actions such as intimidation, harassment, bribery, or even flattery to coerce suspects into committing crimes. If you are someone whose work is in the line of security and law where things like this are at a higher chance of happening, it would be the best choice to be safer for yourself. Safe Life Defense’s sale page will show you the basic necessities you need to be protected.
Law Enforcement Entrapment
Police entrapment is described as being “set up” by the police or a government department rather than a private individual. On the other hand, entrapment does not involve the planting of evidence or pressuring a false statement. These are police-involved offenses, and there are alternate defenses available.
Take note that local police, federal law enforcement officers such as the FBI, and county sheriffs can apprehend you.
Entrapment By a Citizen
If you committed the offense under threats of assault or prolonged fraud, you might say you were set up. In this situation, the government is not the one entrapping you; rather, it is the person intimidating or extorting you.
If a private citizen induces you to commit a crime, you cannot use the entrapment defense. There are other defenses that are available.
Affirmative Entrapment Defense
Entrapment is an affirmative defense. Before a judge, the suspect or their attorney may have the burden of proving that the crime meets the state’s concept of entrapment. Entrapment, unfortunately, is a tough defense to claim.
Evidence of three factors is required to establish an entrapment defense:
- The fraud was conceived by a government officer. Entrapment may only be done by a government agency, not a citizen
- The perpetrator had no intention of committing the offense and was not inclined to do so
- The acts or activities of the government officer are why the defendant performed the offense
The distinction between entrapment and a defendant acting on a fraud opportunity is blurry. The fact that law enforcement agents are legally permitted to conduct covert sting operations adds to the complexity of the entrapment defense. Officers have the ability to provide ways for people to commit crimes. They can’t, however, force, bully, or intimidate anyone into breaking the law.
How Do You Prove Entrapment?
The defendant must provide evidence that meets either an objective or subjective standard to establish an entrapment defense. That, of course, depends on the state law where the defendant is charged.
The complainant must show that the conduct of law officers would have caused any law-abiding person to commit a crime under an objective definition. The emphasis of this standard is on law enforcement actions rather than the defendant’s tendency to commit a crime.
Regardless of the police’s conduct, the suspect must show that he did not have a predisposition to perform the offense as a norm.
The jury or judge considering an entrapment case under this principle must determine whether the suspect was predisposed to commit the offense, even though the police officer’s conduct was excessive and improper, even if it encouraged the suspect rather than police conduct.
Burden of Proof
If the defendant can show entrapment by a predominance of the proof, the judge or jury must find him not guilty under the objective standard. The criminal is not entitled to a not guilty conviction under the subjective norm.
Instead, the judge or jury must also determine whether the state has proved its case without a reasonable doubt. They must prove that the suspect performed the offense because of his criminal tendency and not because of police conduct.
How Do You Define Predisposition to Commit a Crime?
What constitutes predisposition in the context of entrapment law? One example will be any previous illegal activity of a similar kind.
For example, police officers might use previous fraud crimes as evidence that they would do it again.
Another would be a mental reaction that implies they chose to commit the crime. Everyone who expresses a desire to blow up an office complex online or orally has a rough time escaping an FBI sting designed to trap suspected terrorists.
Entrapped? Break Free!
The classic definition of entrapment is “I was set up.” There is, though, more about it than meets the eye.
Law enforcement agents must arrest criminals, not encourage them. That is the defense of entrapment in its entirety. If law enforcement officers’ illegal conduct caused you to commit a felony, you would not have done. Otherwise, the entrapment defense could be your ticket to getting all charges dismissed!
Visit us today at mailletcriminallaw.com if you find yourself in this position. We will assist you in defending yourself against a criminal charge that you are actually facing!