More and more sex crimes are being reported in the state of Michigan. Many of these that are published in the news are internet-based sex crimes:
- Online solicitation and prostitution
- Chat Room or App Solicitation of a minor
- Illegal Use of Pornography
- Indecent exposure over Instant Message or Video Stream Charges
- Child Pornography
There are at least two reasons for this; one that is often reported, and one that isn’t as often reported. We’ve heard increasingly disturbing data about the first reason. Child pornography is on the rise.
Since the FBI released its sobering statistics in 2017, not a week goes by that the agency doesn’t apprehend someone new.
The sad reality is that the internet has created a market for child pornography. The FBI believes those they apprehend are the tip of the iceberg, and many of them don’t have a criminal record.
The other reason that doesn’t get reported as often has to do with how police and investigators are trying to apprehend alleged criminals.
Investigators are online, in the chat rooms and on apps popular with young teens, posing as either children or criminals. Their objective is to try to catch people in criminal acts.
The question is whether this violates the rights of average citizens.
Internet-Based Sex Crimes Investigations
Police Setting Traps
According to a Forbes story, the FBI took over the Instagram and Kik accounts of a known child porn “dealer.”
It is the first time something like this has been documented. However, you can be sure investigators everywhere are using these and other tactics.
Kik is a Canadian made chat app popular with kids under 18. Therefore, it is also popular with online predators.
When police came to search the home and computer of 23-year-old Daxton Hansen of Roy, Utah, Hansen was forthcoming about his use of child pornography.
Hansen ended up signing an FD-1086 form, which enabled investigators to take over his social media accounts and pose as Hansen to investigate other dealers and users of pornography.
In a similar, and more controversial operation, the Department of Justice took over and ran a heavily encrypted dark website called “Playpen” in February of 2015, aiming damaging code at visitors to attempt to unveil their identities.
The operation lead to 200 prosecutions and the rescue of 49 children.
Many people are arrested for internet solicitation because they have been lured and entrapped by law enforcement in internet chat rooms and on popular apps.
Other police tactics include:
- Searching file sharing sites for common terms used in child pornography
- IP address tracing
- Posing as young children online
- Posing as people interested in buying or trading child pornography & arresting those who approach them
- Making deals with those caught with child pornography to turn in others
- Posting illegal images on the dark web to see who downloads them
Aggressive Internet Sex Crimes Defense
I probably don’t have to tell you that your quality of life is threatened if you are being investigated for an internet sex crime.
Whether you are falsely accused or you were lured by police, or even if you have an addiction problem that has come to a head in this way, you need an aggressive criminal defense attorney.
The laws governing these crimes are continually changing. You need someone who understands the ins and outs of your charges, as well as an advocate.
I will make sure to investigate every detail in your case, as well as to look at how police investigated you and whether your rights were violated.
If they were, we will fight to uphold your rights and get the best possible outcome.
Michigan Sex Crimes Attorney
Internet-based sex crimes are often prosecuted and penalized harshly. If you are or a loved one is facing an investigation or sex crime charges, call my office today.
Let’s start fighting for your freedom!