Kidnapping Defense Attorney
In the state of California, kidnapping charges carry harsh penalties that can enhance punishment for other charges. Because of the complex nature of these crimes, you cannot afford to defend yourself in court. You need a skilled kidnapping defense attorney who knows how to win a kidnapping case and use evidence to your benefit.
Under California Penal Code Section (PC 207), kidnapping is defined as moving another person a substantial distance without the person’s consent and by means of force. This means it is illegal to take someone to another place within a California county, a different California county, or any other state or country.
Examples of kidnapping are:
- Abducting or taking any person outside of California by force and transporting them across state lines.
- Hiring, persuading, enticing, decoying, or seducing by false promises or misrepresentations, with the intent to employ or sell that person into slavery or involuntary servitude.
- Detaining or arresting someone without the right to do so.
- Seizure, confinement, and imprisonment of a person against their will and without lawful authority, either with the intent to commit any felony, inflict bodily harm, or terrorize.
Sentencing depends on the situation and circumstances of the kidnapping but can range from 3 years to life in prison, and up to $10,000 in fines. Furthermore, under California’s three-strikes law, you must serve at least 85% of your sentence before being released from prison.
If you’ve been threatened with kidnapping charges by the police, read on for some defense strategies for winning your kidnapping case.
Serious Charges and Strategies for Defense
To convict someone under PC 207, the prosecution must prove beyond a reasonable doubt:
- the use of force/fear
- movement for substantial distance
The good news is that there are a variety of legal defenses that can be used to fight kidnapping charges. These include (but are not limited to):
- the alleged victim consented to be moved
- the movement was insufficient to qualify as kidnapping
- you were not the individual who did the kidnapping and only present at the time
- you have been falsely accused based on mistaken identity
- the “kidnapped” individual was willingly in your company and later claimed they weren’t
- you unknowingly committed the crime
- you were protecting a child from harm
Special circumstances, such as ransom and extortion, make the crime of kidnapping more complicated to prosecute. For example, in the case of aggravated kidnapping, if rape or other sexual offenses are involved, the state must prove the defendant:
- already intended to commit these offenses when the movement began
- the forcible movement was more than incidental to the commission of the sex offense
- the forcible movement increased the risk of physical or psychological harm to the victim beyond that of the sex offense
If you’ve been charged with kidnapping with aggravated circumstances, then you need the help of a sex crime defense attorney who specializes in cases with complex and overlapping issues.
Finding a Resolution
In Orange County, kidnapping is treated as a violent crime punishable by lengthy prison times and hefty fines. Your kidnapping defense attorney will know how to use the evidence effectively and to your benefit, presenting a strong defense.
Criminal Defense Attorney David A. Stein knows the criminal court process inside and out, and will aggressively fight for the best outcome of your case. If you have been charged with either kidnapping or different charges, contact us to learn more about the strategies that work.