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Myths and Facts About Human Trafficking Charges

Airport Crime

If you get accused of any sex offense, your fear of social stigma is reasonable. After all, your name will appear on the sex offender registry if you get convicted of any except the most trivial of sex-related offenses, even if you get a plea deal. The attention economy makes big money off of accusations of sex crimes, to the point where finding unbiased jurors who have not heard about a high-profile case is a major challenge. The good news is that, no matter how serious the charges are, you have the right to a fair trial where the court ensures that the jury understands what is and is not included in the definition of the charges at hand and only hears testimony and sees exhibits that are relevant to the case and legally admissible. A Texas sex crime attorney can help you if you are facing charges of human trafficking or another serious sexual offense.

MYTH: If You Are Engaging in Human Trafficking, You Know It

FACT: You can be convicted of human trafficking in Texas if you participate in an organized operation in which people are held against their will and restricted from moving freely and where other people benefit financially from the individuals being trafficked. Human trafficking is a second-degree felony if the people being trafficked are adults. It is a first-degree felony if the people being trafficked are minors. Charges of human trafficking can still apply even if you did not physically transport anyone against his or her will. You can be convicted if you participated in the trafficking or benefited from its proceeds in any way.

MYTH: Human Trafficking Always Involves Sex Offenses

FACT: Most cases of human trafficking involve labor trafficking, where someone agrees to perform some kind of work but then gets unfairly exploited, often because the worker is in a vulnerable position due to lack of legal immigration status. Sex trafficking, where one party benefits financially from sexual favors performed by another in exchange for money, accounts for only a minority of human trafficking cases.

MYTH: You Can’t Get Life in Prison Unless Someone Dies

FACT: The maximum penalty for first-degree human trafficking is 99 years. It is not technically a life sentence, and you may eventually become eligible for parole, but if you get convicted of first-degree human trafficking, spending the rest of your life behind bars is a possibility.

MYTH: Once the Jury Hears the Words “Human Trafficking,” Your Goose Is Cooked

FACT: You have the right to a fair trial, regardless of the nature of the charges that you are facing. Your lawyer can file motions to exclude inadmissible evidence. To be acquitted of human trafficking charges, you must only establish reasonable doubt in the minds of the jurors about whether your actions actually amounted to human trafficking.

Contact the Law Office of Patrick J. McLain, PLLC About Criminal Defense Cases

Dallas sex crime defense lawyer can help you if you are being accused of human trafficking. 

Contact the Law Office of Patrick J. McLain, PLLC, in Dallas, Texas, to discuss your case.

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