Not many things in life are worse than being accused of committing a sex crime. A mere accusation can be humiliating, disruptive, and overwhelming for both you and your family, but a conviction can be devastating. Both may carry a life-long social stigma for you and your family, permanently damage your reputation, destroy your career, and cause your neighbors to turn and walk the other way when they see you on the street. Convictions bring all that and more. The statutory penalties oftentimes mandate prison sentences of 5, 10, or 15 years, sex offender registration requirements, and significant restitution payments, not to mention the fact that being branded as a “sex offender” will impede your future ability to obtain work, housing, and education. However, having a skilled team of Lake County sex crime lawyers on your side can dramatically reduce your chances of getting hit with maximum penalties.
The Stracci Law Group works diligently to provide you with the experienced and aggressive representation you need. Contact our criminal defense lawyers today for a free consultation to learn more about your legal options and how we can achieve the best possible outcome for your case.
Why Hire the Stracci Law Group?
For years now, the federal government has zealously investigated and prosecuted all types of federal sex offenses, but that statement is especially true when it comes to any sex crime with a minor victim, the production, distribution, or possession of child pornography, and human sex trafficking. Federal agents and prosecutors have enormous resources at their disposal – they work 24 hours a day posing as children on the internet and searching for those seeking to engage in sex acts with children, they maintain listings of child pornography images and can trace photographs to determine their origin, date, and location, they have the ability to seize and search your cell phone, computer, and any other electronic device you have touched – and they are not likely to express any type of sympathy towards you, or your alleged offense, or your family. Even if innocent, you will face a difficult, uphill battle, especially if your case receives any sort of media attention. The risk for you and your family is always the exceedingly harsh statutory penalties, including decades behind bars and mandatory sex offender reporting requirements.
The Stracci Law Group will work quickly, efficiently, and strategically to defend your case and preserve your future. When you hire the Stracci Law Group, you get a team of experienced federal criminal defense attorneys with a long history of defending a wide variety of federal sex crimes, including Child Molestation, Child Pornography, Sexual Abuse, Human Trafficking, Coercion and Enticement, Solicitation, and Transportation of Minors cases. The Stracci Law Group works together to protect your future. Our Lake County sex crime lawyers are ready to assist you right now.
What Is a Federal Sex Crime?
Sex crimes fall under federal jurisdiction when the allegations include crossing state lines, for example traveling from one state to another to engage in sexual activity with a minor, transporting an adult across state lines to engage in a commercial sex act, and human trafficking. But bear in mind, you don’t have to get up out of your armchair, walk out of your house, and physically travel to another state to be charged with a federal sex crime. Computer and internet activity like downloading media files from the internet, sending and receiving emails and text messages, tweets, instagrams, and other communications all count as “crossing state lines.” That means you can be charged with a federal sex crime, like producing or distributing child pornography or enticing a minor to travel even if you never leave your home.
What Types of Federal Sex Crimes Does the Stracci Law Group Defend?
- Internet Sex Crimes
- Production of Child Pornography
- Distribution of Child Pornography
- Possession of Child Pornography
- Human Sex Trafficking
- Child Sex Trafficking
- Transportation of a Minor with Intent to Engage in Criminal Sexual Activity
- Aggravated Sexual Abuse
- Sexual Abuse of a Minor
- Coercion and Enticement
What Is the Federal Age of Consent?
No matter what the age of consent in your state, federal law considers any person under 18 to be a minor child. Thus, under federal law, no one under 18 can legally engage in illicit sexual activity, participate in commercial sex acts like prostitution, or be depicted in pornographic pictures or videos. As an example, while it may be legal under both state and federal law for a 17-year-old to consent to have sex with a 19-year-old, should the couple cross state lines to have sex, or should the 19-year-old take sexually explicit photographs of the 17-year-old and post them on the internet, a federal offense has been committed.
Will I Have to Register as a Sex Offender Under SORNA?
The Sex Offender Registration and Notification Act (SORNA), is part of a comprehensive federal law that requires states to maintain a system for monitoring and tracking convicted sex offenders following their release into the community. Under SORNA, anyone convicted of either a state or federal sex offense who knowingly fails to register or update an existing registration can be prosecuted. Those who fail to register may face up to 10 years in prison and be required to pay fines, and if the failure to register is coupled with the commission of a violent federal crime, the offender may face up to 30 years in prison.
SORNA categorizes sex offenses into three “tiers” according to the type of offense, length of possible prison term, aggravating circumstances, age of the victim, and other factors. Each tier imposes certain reporting requirements:
Tier III Offenses
This is the most serious of the three tiers. Tier III includes convictions for aggravated sexual abuse, sexual abuse, and abusive sexual contact (committed against a minor under 13 years of age) that are punishable by at least one year in prison. Tier III convictions carry a lifetime sex offender reporting requirement.
Tier II Offenses
Tier II includes convictions for sex trafficking, coercion or enticement, transportation to engage in criminal sexual activity, or abusive sexual activity (with a minor age 13 or older) that are punishable by at least one year in prison. Tier II also includes convictions for using a minor in a sexual performance, soliciting a minor to engage in prostitution, and producing or distributing child pornography. Tier II convictions carry a 25-year sex offender reporting requirement.
Tier I Offenses
Tier I convictions are those that do not fall into the other two tiers.
Tier I convictions carry a 10 to 15-year sex offender reporting requirement depending upon certain circumstances.
Am I Facing Prison Time?
In most cases, yes. Federal sex offense cases are serious felonies, and many carry mandatory minimum prison sentences. Although your Judge will consult the Federal Sentencing Guidelines to calculate what your recommended sentence should be, if your offense carries a statutory mandatory minimum sentence, no matter the guideline recommendation the Judge will not be able to impose a sentence that is less than the statutory mandatory minimum.
Schedule a Free Consultation With Our Federal Sex Crime Lawyers
We want you to be confident that we are the best choice for you, and thus, the Stracci Law Group offers free, comprehensive, and confidential consultations. Call 219-525-1000 today to schedule a time to meet with our Federal sex crime lawyers to personally discuss your situation and learn more about our services, knowledge, and federal courtroom experience.