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    Child Grooming

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      Best Child Grooming Lawyers

      Our child grooming lawyers understand that being charged with an offence of ‘Grooming, procuring or meeting a child under 16 for unlawful sexual activity’ is a life-altering experience. The stigma that comes with such allegations and the impact it can have on your employment and family life.

      You can view some recent results for these charges here.

      Fortunately, our child grooming lawyers have handled a wide array of cases and have had client after client found ‘not guilty’. We have also helped countless clients avoid jail sentences if they choose to plead guilty.

      If you have been charged with such an offence, it is important that you get advice early. Contact us now to speak to our Law Society accredited specialist criminal lawyer today.

      WHAT SHOULD I DO?

      • PLEADING NOT GUILTY

        What is Child Grooming?

        Section 66EB of the Crimes Act 1900 (NSW) sets out that if you engaged in a course of conduct preparatory to using a child for unlawful sexual activity, you can be guilty of an offence.

        Child Grooming is a strictly indictable offence. As such, it must be finalised in the District Court.

         

        How do you beat a Child Grooming charge?

        You can fight a child grooming charge in two ways. Firstly, the prosecution must prove each of the following beyond reasonable doubt:

        If charged with ‘Grooming a child under 16 for unlawful sexual activity’ pursuant to s66EB(3) of the Act:

        1. You engaged in conduct that exposed the alleged victim to indecent material either in person, over telephone, Internet or other means, computer images, videos or publications; or
        2. You provided the alleged victim with an intoxicating substance; and
        3. You intended to do this to make it easier to use the alleged victim for unlawful sexual activity; and
        4. The alleged victim was under 16 or 14 years of age (depending on the charge).

        If charged with ‘meeting a child under 16 for unlawful sexual activity’ pursuant to s66EB(2A) of the Act:

        1. You engaged in conduct that exposed the alleged victim to indecent material either in person or by telephone, internet, by providing images, videos or publications; and
        2. You then intentionally met, or intentionally travelled to meet the alleged victim; and
        3. You did this with the intention of using the alleged victim for unlawful sexual activity; and
        4. The alleged victim was under 14 or 16 years of age (depending on the charge).

        If charged with ‘Procuring a child under 16 for unlawful sexual activity’ pursuant to s66EB(2) of the Act:

        1. You intended to obtain the alleged victim for unlawful sexual activity; and
        2. The alleged victim was under 14 or 16 years of age (depending on the charge).

        If any of these elements are not made out, then you can be found ‘not guilty’.

        Secondly, you can rely on one of the defences.

        What are the Defences to Child Grooming?

        The following can be used as defences to these charges:

        1. Honest and reasonable mistake: You honestly believed the alleged victim was 16 years of age or more, and your belief was reasonably held in the circumstances.
        2. Identification: The Crown cannot establish your identity beyond doubt
        3. Duress:You were forced to commit the offence

        It is important to be aware that the following matters are not defences:

        1. Consent: a child cannot give consent. As such, consent cannot be used as a defence.
        2. Entrapment: Although a child is a person under 16 years of age, the legal definition includes a person who pretends to be a child if you believed that the person was a child under 16. This is often used by undercover Police who pose as children online and entrap people.

        We have an experienced team of senior criminal defence lawyers who have dealt with the most serious child sex cases. We can quickly identify any possible defences that may be open to you and begin preparing your defence immediately.

        Contact us now to speak to one of our specialist child grooming lawyers today.

      • PLEADING GUILTY

        If after receiving detailed advice from a specialist criminal defence lawyer for child grooming charges, you decide that the best course if for you to plead guilty, you will need to begin preparing a defence.

        Our guide will assist you generally, however, you will need to consult one of our specialist child grooming solicitors for representation in Court and specific advice for your case.

        Contact us now to arrange an appointment.

         

        What is the penalty for Child Grooming?

        For a charge of ‘procuring or meeting a child under 16 for unlawful sexual activity’, if the child is under 14 years of age, the maximum penalty is 15 years imprisonment.

        • The standard non-parole period is 6 years imprisonment

        For a charge of ‘procuring or meeting a child under 16 for unlawful sexual activity’, if the child is under 16 years of age but over 14 years of age, the maximum penalty is 12 years imprisonment.

        • The standard non-parole period is 5 years imprisonment

        For a charge of ‘Grooming a child under 16 for unlawful sexual activity’, if the child is under 14 years of age, the maximum penalty is 15 years imprisonment.

        • The standard non-parole period is 5 years imprisonment

        For a charge of ‘Grooming a child under 16 for unlawful sexual activity’, if the child is under 16 years of age but over 14 years of age, the maximum penalty is 12 years imprisonment.

        • The standard non-parole period is 4 years imprisonment

         

        What is the standard non-parole period (SNPP)?

        The SNPP is the starting point for the period of time you must spend in jail. This is not mandatory but more of a guide.

         

        What are the possible sentences for child grooming?

        Below is a list of possible sentences:

        • Section 10 dismissal
        • Conditional release order without conviction (previously known as Section 10 good behaviour bond)
        • Fine
        • Conditional release order with conviction (previously known as Section 9 good behaviour bond)
        • Community Corrections Order (previously known as Community Service Order)
        • Intensive Corrections Order
        • Full Time Imprisonment

        Offences of this nature almost exclusively result in a term of imprisonment. This is borne out in the sentencing statistics set out below.

        Will you go to jail for Grooming?

        Statistics reveal that in the last 5 years, no person has avoided a criminal conviction for this offence in the District Court. In relation to the NSW offence, 100% of offenders received a sentence of full-time imprisonment. In relation to the Commonwealth offence, 55% of offenders received a sentence of full-time imprisonment. The remaining offenders received criminal convictions.

        Avoiding a gaol sentence is difficult. As such, you should speak to one of our specialist criminal defence solicitors for child grooming charges.

      Ask a question now!