Craigslist Sting Operations

     Police Departments across Massachusetts such as the Brookline Police Department are using computers to aggressively target individuals who are looking to hook up through Craigslist under women for men and they are casting a wide net.  The sting operation often involves something like this:  The police posting an ad on Craigslist that states “play hooky” and suggest a certain date when to do so.  You could be searching to meet someone and you connect and email or text with someone you believe to be a female.  It is actually a police officer on the other end of the computer purporting to be a young female and after repeated texts or emails often involving coaxing, etc. they get you to meet somewhere in Brookline They get you to send a picture of yourself and to describe your vehicle.  They may send you a blurry photo of a female or put one of their female officers on the phone to speak briefly with you in an effort to get you to meet up.  Then when they show up several officers surround you and they arrest you.  If this has happened to you do not speak with the police to tell them “your side of the story.”  Do not give them permission to search your telephone or other electronic device.  You may have viable defenses such at entrapment.  Contact a lawyer as soon as possible.  Under the statute the police do not need an actual victim or person under the age of sixteen to arrest you.  The penalty for enticing a child under 16  (M.G.L. 265 s. 26C(b)) is up to 5 years in state prison or up to 2 ½ years in  a house of correction and a fine of up to $5,000.00 and a conviction will result, in you having to register as a sex offender.  Therefore, it is of the utmost importance to hire experienced counsel as soon as possible after your arrest to aggressively defend you in these types of cases.  

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