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What is drug entrapment?

On Behalf of | Apr 20, 2023 | Drug Charges

Police conduct undercover operations to catch criminals in the act of committing a crime, but they must follow strict and lawful protocol. For the sting operation to have merit, it is imperative they catch an individual selling, offering to sell or possessing drugs. Drug entrapment is when a police officer coaxes or pressures a person to commit a drug crime, even though the person was not in a predisposition to commit the crime.

How to prove entrapment?

If the convicted party can prove that they did not willfully and voluntarily commit the crime, they have an affirmative defense against the drug charges. They must prove by a “preponderance of evidence” that the law enforcement officer was guilty of drug entrapment. The defendant can prove this by establishing the following:

  • It was the police officer who conceived and introduced the idea to the defendant to buy or sell drugs.
  • The undercover police officer encouraged the defendant to buy or sell drugs.
  • The defendant would never have committed the crime without police involvement.

It places a lesser burden of proof on the person who the officer wrongfully arrested. Convicting someone of a crime requires the prosecution to prove “beyond a reasonable doubt” that the person is guilty.

Are you a victim of entrapment?

Entrapment is only a viable defense against law enforcement officers and agents. Because of their position, they can threaten or harass an individual to do something that can appear lawful. An undercover officer can even coerce a person to commit a crime by making the innocent party believe they will die or succumb to drug withdrawal without the substance.

If you were a victim of drug entrapment, you should always maintain your innocence despite duress. A drug conviction in Ohio has terrible consequences. You have a right to defend yourself against police misconduct.