June 28, 2011
The recent Pensacola Floirda “sting” case dubbed “Operation Blue Shephard” involving primarily young men soliciting through computer communications with undercover law enforcements officers posing as the parents suggesting these young men have sexual relations with their own 12-14 year old children raises significant issues in the way police catch otherwise law-abiding citizens by manufacturing a crime. All of these issues will not be discussed in this forum with cases currently pending. However, some basic issues are discussed below that may apply to some of these cases. There are two types of entrapment; however, again this articles primary purpose is to merely inform the reader of the basics of such a defense.
Entrapment requires that 1) the government induce the individual to commit the crime, and 2) the individual was not predisposed to commit the crime before the government’s involvement. If the individual can prove inducement, burden shifts to the prosecution to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the defendant was predisposed to commit the crime. United States v. Demarest , 570 F. 3d. 1232, 1240 (11th Circuit) 2009.