Hillsborough Human Trafficking Stings destroys lives

It is time for legalized regulated prostitution

State and Federal Sex Crime Criminal Defense STATEWIDE: 941-366-3506 Sarasota: 941-366-3506 Lee County: 239-334-8890 Representing the accused

Law enforcement continues to create human trafficking cases in Tampa.  Is it really human trafficking, or are the police creating crimes with outrageous entrapment techniques?

In recent Tampa and Brandon cases, Detectives first post on common escort sites, pretending to be adult prostitutes.  The police are actually soliciting for prostitution offering what initially they represent as adult women to engage in sexual activity for money.  When guys call in, they change the age, then claiming that the prostitute is actually 17 years old.  In doing so, the police  elevate what would normally be a misdemeanor, to a felony human trafficking charge, potentially carrying a life sentence.  In recent cases, the female detectives posted videos on Instagram, scantily clad, in sexual poses, encouraging guys to come and engage in sex for money.

In almost every one of the cases, there is no human trafficking victim, and it is a female detective, pretending to be an underage prostitute.  This enables the detectives to turn a misdemeanor into a major felony making the men arrested face decades in prison, and life long sex offender registration.  Law enforcement is actually creating a felony by engaging in what appears to be illegal conduct,  solicitation for prostitution.

Prostitution is the world’s oldest profession.  It has been around since the beginning of time.  It is true, that in some instances, women are taken advantage of by human traffickers that trick them into prostitution lifestyles.  Many are from foreign countries and are trafficked in involuntary servitude by violent pimps and gangs.  They are truly the victims of human trafficking.

There are however many adult women however that have chosen this lifestyle because of the lucrative money they can make as a “working girl” in just a few hours.  Many women have chosen the worlds oldest profession rather than work at regular jobs.  Life is about choices.

The answer to stopping human trafficking is to legalize prostitution and regulate it, like all of the other vices, such as smoking, drinking and drugs.  Prostitution will never be stopped or ceased to exist.  If there were legitimate facilities that offered prostitution, it would put the human traffickers out of business.

 A good example is the Florida lottery.  Before the Florida lottery, there was the old illegal “numbers game” where people could play a number and bet a two, three or four digit number based on a number from the Cuban Lottery or some other random number that could not be manipulated.  Then came the Florida lottery and it put the illegal lottery out of business.

If a man could go to a legitimate prostitution facility, where the women are medically tested, where they did not have to fear getting robbed or mugged, where the girls are clean and drug free, no one would even think of going to an illegal human trafficking operation. 

Here is the simple truth.  Some men are insecure and lack the social skills to get laid.  Some men are workaholics and lack the time to engage in a relationship.  Some men don’t want to lie to a woman about love or their affection just to engage in sex.  Prostitution fulfills a “need” in society and has been around since the beginning of time.  In most of the civilized world it is accepted and tolerated.

The answer to stopping human trafficking is to create a legal alternative (just as we have done with the illegal gambling and with marijuana). 

As a criminal defense lawyer, and (former federal agent), I have seen this from both sides.  There are some activities that cannot be stopped, and a far better solution, it to make the activity safer and better regulated.  Prostitution even predates human development.  Female chimpanzees even traded sex for food and protection

The human trafficking stings are well intended, but totally ineffective, and worse yet, destroy lives.  A man, simply seeking a sexual encounter, can end up being in prison for years, can end up being a registered sex offender for life, can end up being a convicted felon, all because he answered an escort ad run by the Hillsborough Sheriff’s office.

The police need to be concentrating on real crime, not creating crime.  If you saw the Instagram videos the detectives placed to lure men, you would be shocked.  A video with a female detective posing on a bed in black panties with the caption “Who wants a biteee”  is not legitimate law enforcement.

Over the years, as a defense attorney, I have defended both prostitutes as well as the “johns” that pay them for sex.  As a sex crime lawyer, I have watched the laws get harsher and the harm get greater for those arrested.  As a sex sting lawyer, I have represented over fifty men arrested in sex stings.  In almost every one of those cases, the man was not looking for a minor a child.  It was classic bait and switch by law enforcement and the police arrested “weak” and “insecure men”, who had no intention of hooking up with a minor, until the police suggested and pitched it.

The public needs to learn the truth about what law enforcement and the State Attorneys Office is doing in these types of cases.

Legitimate legalized prostitution is the answer

Great new Internet Sex Sting Decision in Sarasota Case

Aiken and O’Halloran Experienced Sex Crimes Defense Lawyers Peter D Aiken Sean C. O’Halloran Sarasota co 941-366-3506 Lee co 239-334-8890 All Florida Counties 941-366-3506

The Second District Court of Appeal just reversed a conviction arising as a result of the Sarasota Sheriff’s 2019 Sex sting operation.  The Appeal Court has finally addressed the Entrapment techniques being used by the Sarasota Sheriff.  The issue in an entrapment case is whether or not law enforcement is creating the crime and inducing men who are not otherwise predisposed to engage in sex with minors to commit a crime.  The Sarasota Sheriff, with Ed Brodsky’s blessing, has been engaged in outrageous entrapment techniques for years.  Finally an appeal court is addressing this issue.  In the most recent decision, the defendant was not looking for a child and met the undercover detective on Meetme.com where the undercover cop originally posted as an adult. There was zero evidence of predisposition and the inducement and the luring was being done by the Sheriff’s detective.

As a sex sting lawyer, I have been blogging  for years trying to alert the public as to what the Sheriff’s office here in Sarasota has been doing.  Finally the Sheriff’s entrapment methods have been exposed.  I urge everyone to read the Second District Court of Appeal opinion in Demare v State.  You can simply Google “Second District Court of Appeal” and look at recent opinions and look for the one on Demare.  The opinion ruled that the detectives engaged in Entrapment “as a matter of law” and held that the local judge should have dismissed the case.  Hopefully, now with this opinion the local Courts will have some guidance on what is acceptable police conduct, and what is not.

The really sad thing is that the State Attorney’s office should have reigned in these tactics long ago.  The undercover detectives, particularly the ones involved in the 2019 stings, have engaged in outrageous  police conduct.  In another case, arising in this same 2019 sting,  the detectives posted as an adult prostitute, on an escort site, soliciting for prostitution.  In that case the detectives actively advertised that they were an adult prostitute, posted the hours, said they would accept cash and for all intensive purposes pretended to be an adult prostitute.  They then did their basic “bait and switch”.  That case is now working its way through the court system I have a pending motion to dismiss based on this even more outrageous police conduct.

I urge everyone to go read this opinion…Finally…the Courts are doing what the Sarasota State Attorney should have done years ago. 

Did this happen to you? I would like to hear your side .

Sarasota Internet Sex Stings…..Will they ever end?

Over this past Weekend, there were a number of arrests for traveling to meet a minor and Internet solicitation of a minor.  The truth is, there were no minors….There never are.

The Sarasota Sheriff does this about twice a year targeting the “low hanging fruit” by going on the Internet dating sites, pretending to be an adult and then in classic bait and switch luring unsuspecting men into compromising conversations with undercover detectives In Sarasota County, you will get arrested for just chatting with a minor, much less meeting one.  What drives this is the creation of statistics.  Law enforcement creates a crime by luring and seducing unsuspecting men into chatting with undercover detectives.  All of this begins with the police posting false profiles on adult sites, pretending to be a woman of legal age. Once the chats begin and the bait is taken, the detectives then claim to be underage saying “I hope you are not mad, I am really 13 or 14”.  They will then hint that they are not really very experienced and pretend that they need an older guy to teach them about sex.  Sadly weak men succumb to this temptation and continue to chat.  The detectives immediately try to get them to text.  The undercover cops are really good at walking that fine line between legitimate law enforcement and EntrapmentIt is the police doing the luring and seducing 90% or the time. 

News Flash!  There are no real 14 year old girls on the Internet that want to chat or talk with older men.  It is always the police running their bait and switch scam.  The simple answer is, that no man should ever text or chat with any minor about anything, much less sex.  You can’t get arrested if you don’t commit a crime.  The second anyone ever even hints they are underage, terminate all contact.  Even if the undercover chatter texts you back “you are really cute”, block them and terminate all contact.  There are no young girls on the Internet that want to have anything to do with you.  Why would they?  There are tons of teenage boys already chasing them.  Never talk on the computer or cell phone with anyone underage for any reason.  There is never a good reason for a twenty or thirty year old guy talking with a girl in middle school or high school.  They don’t call it “jail bait” for nothing.  No matter how tempting it sounds, do not think for a second it is real.  Curiosity killed the cat and curiosity will land you in State prison and make you a registered sex offender and land you on a decade of Sex offender probation.  Young girl plus texting equals jail…..always.

If you have a relative arrested in one of these stings, do not be mad and do not write them off.  Chances are, it was the police preying on their weakness.  I have defended autistic young men who simply do not know better I have defended lonely college kids who are naïve and desperate for any girl to talk to them or pay attention to them.  Desperate young men do desperate things.  If you have a son who is introverted or vulnerable, educate them to the dangers of the Internet.  We used to think we had to protect our daughters from the Internet predators.  Now you have to think about protecting your sons from the Police Internet predators.  They prey on naïve young insecure introverted men in their early twenties.  Don’t you think the police should concentrate on the real predators?  How about going to schools and lecturing on the dangers of the Internet. 

Here is another great danger.  Never send a pic of your penis to anyone, much less someone who pretends or claims to be underage.  Most adult women are not impressed….”seen one, seen um all”.  It is not like your dick has personality.  If a chatter suggests a nude pic or a dick pic, never, no never send one.  There is another scam going around where scammers trick someone into sending a pic and then try and shake you down for money pretending to be a detective.  I get about one call a week from guys that are being extorted by scammers.  The Internet is a dangerous place and you put yourself at great risk for even texting or chatting with anyone who claims to be underageHere in Sarasota, the State Attorney will even request arrest warrants for people who simply chat or text and then refuse to travelYou can get arrested in Sarasota for simply texting, even if you are pretty sure it is an adult.  As a sex sting lawyer, I have handled over forty cases and never once was there a real child in danger.  You need to really read up on what is happening