5th Jun 2018
If you are being charged with kidnapping, it is important to retain the services of an experienced criminal defense attorney in Broward County. During an initial consultation, a criminal defense attorney in Broward County can discuss the following information about kidnapping charges:
Seriousness of the Offense
Kidnapping is considered a serious felony in Florida. A first degree felony charge is punishable by life in a Florida state prison. This offense is defined as using force, using a threat of force or acting in a secret manner to imprison, confine or abduct another person against their will.
Elements of Kidnapping
The prosecutor must prove certain elements before he or she can secure a conviction for kidnapping. The elements of kidnapping include:
- The defendant used force or the threat of force or acted secretly to imprison, confine or abduct another person against their will
- The defendant had no legal authority to confine, abduct or imprison the other person
- The defendant committed these acts with the intention to inflict bodily harm upon the victim, terrorize the victim, abduct the victim for ransom, hold the victim as a hostage, interfere with government function, hold the victim to commit another specified felony
Florida law provides for enhanced penalties if the person kidnapped is under 13 years old. These enhancements can be made if the kidnapper allowed the child to be exploited, prostituted the child, committed aggravated child abuse or sexual battery against the child or committed certain lewd or lascivious acts.