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Background on Internet Sex Crimes in California

Posted by Ronald D. Hedding | Jul 07, 2020

Since the advent of the internet, sex crimes have been rampant, and it has taken police, and law enforcement — both at the federal and state level — some time to deal with internet crimes.

For a long period — I've been doing this for 26 years — so I've been involved since the beginning of defending internet crimes and seeing what law enforcement is doing to try and figure them out.

But for a long time, there was a lot of crime going on on the internet related to sex offenses ranging from child pornography to some online dating and prostitution — all sorts of issues related to internet sex crimes, and the police and prosecutors really couldn't do anything about it because they didn't have the tools to be able to combat it.

These internet sex crimes are more and more prevalent in today's society.  I've been representing people for internet sex crimes since these crimes started being prosecuted.  The authorities have gotten more and more sophisticated in ferreting out crime related to internet sex.

What these officers do is they will put themselves online, and they will pose as the very victims that they are attempting to protect.  For example, they will go into chat rooms and pretend like they're underage girls who are looking to have sex or have some sort of sexual contact with males on different platforms. 

The people don't realize or don't care that they're actually communicating with an undercover police officer.  Of course, once the police officer has the person hooked in – has them agreeing to meet for purposes of sex – then they break the news to them that they're under the age of 18, and for some unknown reason, individuals still go and meet with the undercover police officer and end up getting arrested.

Police Investigating Internet Sex Crimes

In 2020, the police have come a long way towards investigating some of these crimes in today's day.  They have all sorts of forensic experts who can deal with internet crimes.  They have a host of new technology and strategies.

So, they're arresting people right and left for all sorts of sex-related offenses ranging from people involved in soliciting women on the internet to engaging in sexual intercourse with men and then splitting the profits with them.

So, you have a pimping and pandering situation on the internet, where the man could actually never even meet the women or meet them once, and he's using multiple women to commit sex crime offenses splitting the profit and kind of insulating himself from having to deal with the women directly.

There's also a lot of child pornography on the internet, and the police have all sorts of ways to catch people for that.  There are also chat rooms where purported sexual predators lure victims, and the police can monitor those chat rooms.  Sometimes they pose as people in the chat rooms to catch people involved in sexual offenses.

Special Prosecutors Investigating Sex Crimes

So, internet sex crimes have come a long way regarding law enforcement and prosecutors dealing with these cases.  Even the prosecutors have their unit where all they deal with is internet sex crimes, especially in downtown Los Angeles at the central court, 210 West Temple.

They have a whole unit and a group of prosecutors tasked with dealing with internet sex crimes.  The same with the federal government — the FBI, Homeland Security — they all have different techniques for dealing with sex crimes and then passing them on to the prosecutors.  They get prosecutors who have experience dealing with these types of cases.

Often, especially when it comes to child pornography, the federal government and the FBI will get involved because they have more resources than the state government. See Californians Against Sexual Exploitation Act for more information.

So, if you or a loved one is being investigated or charged with an internet sex crime, I would say get an attorney immediately.  I've been handling internet sex crimes now since the internet has come into play.  I know how to defend them.

There are other internet sex crimes.  For example, sexting someone who's under the age of 18, or sending nude photographs of yourself to someone who's under the age of 18. There is also asking the other person who's under the age of 18 to send you nude photographs of themselves, which of course, is engaging in creating child pornography, and you'd be facing many different felony charges and years in either state or federal prison.  The list goes on.

Fighting Internet Sex Crime Charges in California

I know how to mitigate them, and I know how to deal with them in the best way possible so you can end up with the best resolution.  Often, you might even have a defense to some of these sex crimes if you can show that you weren't the one on the internet.

Maybe somebody else did it — even if you don't know who that person is.  That's why when the police come and execute search warrants and take people's phones, their computers, and other devices, they try to confirm with the person, hey, you're the only one who uses this, right?

And, if the person says yes, that puts the police in a pretty strong position to make the argument that this must be the person that was involved with this sex crime, otherwise why would they admit that they're the only one who uses that particular computer that the police ultimately found some sort of illegal content on and they're now charging the person with.

Sometimes in these internet sex crimes, it's difficult for the prosecutors to prove that the person they have charged is actually the person who was engaged in whatever criminal activity they're being prosecuted for. 

A lot of times, because there's no victim because the police are involved, there are other arguments that can be made to try to minimize and mitigate the fact that there's no victim in the case. So, if you need help, you've come to the right place. Pick up the phone. Make the call.  Ask to set up a meeting with Ron Hedding.  I stand at the ready to help you.

Hedding Law Firm is a criminal defense law firm located in Los Angeles County at 16000 Ventura Blvd #1208 Encino, CA 91436. Contact us for a free case consultation at (213) 542-0979.

About the Author

Ronald D. Hedding

What Makes Ronald Hedding Uniquely Qualified To Represent You? I've been practicing criminal defense for almost 30 years and have handled thousands of cases, including all types of state and federal sex crime cases. All consultations are discreet and confidential.

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