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Florida’s Laws on Sexual Crimes Against Children

Under Florida Law, lewd and lascivious battery occurs when a person 18 years of age or older, engages in sexual activity with a person 12 years of age or older, but less than 16 years of age; or encourages, forces, or entices any person less than 16 years of age to engage in sadomasochistic abuse, sexual bestiality, prostitution, or any other act involving sexual activity commits lewd or lascivious battery. Florida law defines sexual activity as oral, anal, or vaginal penetration by, or union with, the sexual organ of another or the anal or vaginal penetration of another by any other object; however, sexual activity does not include an act done for a bona fide medical purpose. Lewd and lascivious battery is punishable as a felony of the second degree.… […]

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An Analysis of Florida’s Laws Regarding Human Trafficking

Florida laws, like the Federal laws, have strict legislation on the books regarding Human Trafficking. Under Florida General Statutes 787.06 the Legislature finds that human trafficking is a form of modern-day slavery. Victims of human trafficking are young children, teenagers, and adults. Thousands of victims are trafficked annually across international borders worldwide. Many of these victims are trafficked into this state. Victims of human trafficking also include citizens of the United States and those persons trafficked domestically within the borders of the United States. The Legislature finds that victims of human trafficking are subjected to force, fraud, or coercion for the purpose of sexual exploitation or forced labor. Furthermore, in subsection (b) the Legislature finds that while many victims of human trafficking are forced to work in prostitution or the… […]

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Methamphetamine Charges and Sentencing in Florida

Methamphetamine is an illegal drug that causes almost immediate addiction, according to those addicts who have used the drug and in all scientific studies. In Florida, it is illegal to possess methamphetamine, manufacture methamphetamine and possess the ingredients in total to manufacture or make the drug and it is illegal to provide assistants to those who sell, manufacture or possess methamphetamine. The common ingredients in manufacturing methamphetamine are: sodium hydroxide or lye; anhydrous anomia which is used in fertilizer and commercial refrigerators; iodine; red phosphorus, which is found in the tips of matches; ephedrine, found in Sudafed and other cold sinus medicines; Ether; Drano; Brake Fluid, Coleman Camping Fluid and hydrochloric acid, used as a corrosive cleaner for metals and leather. When law enforcement officer in Florida, have probable cause… […]

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Florida Jail House Calls as Evidence

While in jail awaiting trial or release on bond, many inmates find the need to continuously telephone their family, their friends, and their lawyer from inside the jail. Inmates continuously telephone the outside world for many reasons: boredom, concern, and to “discuss their case.” One must always remember that every single call made from a correctional facility in Florida is recorded. Recorded jailhouse telephone calls will be used by the prosecutor, as evidence against the accused, even when the accused is confiding in his or her mother for moral support. This issue was recently ferreted out by the appellate courts in Florida in Bass v. State. Bass was being held pre-trial on the charges that he robbed and murdered a drug dealer in Bay County, Florida. Prior to Bass’ trail,… […]

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Aggravated Battery in the Game of Golf

According to the Palm Beach Post, a relaxing day of golf turned violent when a man became agitated and attacked his two partners with a putter. According to the police report, Michael Rich, of Royal Palm Beach, is in jail facing two counts of aggravated battery. Rich allegedly hit Roy Hall on the back of his leg with a golf putter and then swinging the broken golf club like a sword, struck Anthony Nazzaro, 72 years old, on the wrist. In Florida, Aggravated Battery is defined as a simple battery, which is touching another person against their will or without their consent, and when committing the simple battery the person intentionally or knowingly causes great bodily harm, permanent disability, and permanent disfigurement to the victim or uses a deadly weapon,… […]

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Criminal Charges Involving Florida’s Department of Children and Family Services (DCF)

Under Florida Law, criminal charges can also result in the Department of Children and Families being involved with the accused and their family. If children are present, during the serving of a search warrant of a home that yields illegal narcotics, then law enforcement officers serving the warrant must contact DCF. If an act of violence occurs in the home between the parents of the child, like a domestic battery, and the child is present, then DCF will be involved. If a parent or a “school teacher” with the latter being mandatory reporters, makes an allegation of child abuse, Law Enforcement Officials will response alongside of DCF. Remember, if DCF is involved in a family investigation, information the department receives from witnesses, including the accused, will be used against the… […]

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Hate Crimes in Florida

Hate Crimes in Florida

Several Florida news outlets have reported that an 18 year old man from Okeechobee, Florida was arrested for beating up a 16 year old autistic boy at a house party. In a video posted to Facebook, the 18 year man stands over the cowering 16 year old boy, punching him in the head and cursing at him, as several others stand by, laughing and taunting the victim. The 16 year old victim also told police that the man held a knife to his throat and choked him. The 16 year old boy suffers from autism and has reported that this was the reason that led to the beating. Okeechobee County Assistant State Attorney, Ashley Albright, has indicated that he was looking into possible hate crime sanctions against the 18 year… […]

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An Overview of Florida’s Domestic Violence Laws

In Florida, the crime of Domestic Battery can be either a misdemeanor or a felony depending on whether or not the accused has a prior conviction for battery or the accused falls into one of the special crimes like domestic battery by strangulation. Domestic battery refers to the touching or striking of another person against that person’s will; with both individuals being family members, household members, in a dating relationship, in a romantic relationship. Simple battery occurs in Florida, when a person actually and intentionally touches or strikes another person against the will of the other or intentionally causes bodily harm to another person. Domestic battery compromises one of the prior battery elements; coupled with the “special relationship” element described in the prior paragraph, as between the parties. Simple battery… […]

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Eavesdropping By Cops Does Not Pay Off In Florida Courtrooms

The 4th DCA (District Court of Appeals) recently affirmed a lower court’s evidentiary ruling, which may have far reaching exclusions on statements a defendant makes to third parties, when the statements are overheard by others, including Law Enforcement Officer. See, State v. Topps, at 3730009 WL 4th DCA 2014. The issue on appeal in State v. Topps, was a case of first impression for a Florida court to decide, and the question posed was: “may a law enforcement officer testify about a conversation overheard between an arrestee he is guarding and the psychotherapist treating that person?” The Appellate court found that because the person in custody did not waive the confidentiality of any privilege that the arrestee has with his doctor, and because the arrestee was in custody, and because… […]

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Immigration Law, Deportation and Criminal Convictions

Immigration Law, Deportation and Criminal Convictions

If you are in the United States of America as a documented individual without citizenship, also known as a foreign national, you face deportation if you are convicted of a crime in Florida that violates “moral turpitude” or is listed in the Federal Statues as a deportable crime. Since the early 1900’s when German, Polish, Russian and other Eastern European immigrants came ashore to America, through Ellis Island and other ports of entry, the Federal Courts have been sending the convicted immigrants back to their home country for criminal convictions. The foreign nationals who have been found guilty or have pled guilty of committing a criminal act that falls under the test of “moral turpitude” have long faced deportation out of the United States. Judge Learned Hand, a New York… […]

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