Posted on: November 20, 2015 by in Criminal Defense
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Orange County criminal defense attorneyCalifornia Penal Code 207, 208, 209, and 209.5

In California, if you’re arrested and charged with kidnapping, get the legal help that you need and speak immediately with an experienced Orange County criminal defense attorney. Kidnapping is a serious charge, so do not attempt to act as your own lawyer. Insist on your right to remain silent and to have an attorney present during questioning. Kidnapping is a felony in California, and “aggravated” kidnapping is an even more serious offense. Aggravated kidnapping happens when:

• force, fear, or fraud is used and a kidnapping victim is a child under 14 years old
• when a kidnapper communicates a ransom demand
• when a kidnapping victim suffers serious injuries or death
• when a kidnapping is tied to a carjacking or to another crime

Life in prison can be the penalty for aggravated kidnapping in California. Even without the circumstances that make a kidnapping “aggravating,” a conviction is punishable by up to eight years in a California state prison. If a kidnapping victim is taken across a state line, a federal kidnapping indictment is likely. A conviction may be followed by a civil lawsuit – victims of “false imprisonment” have the right to sue for damages in the civil courts. However, sometimes what’s happened isn’t actually a kidnapping – it’s a mistake or a misunderstanding. To convict you of kidnapping in California, a prosecutor must prove that:

• The victim did not consent or was too young to consent.
• You took, detained, or held someone through force or reasonable fear.
• You transported the victim or had the victim move a substantial distance.

Of course, merely being charged with kidnapping does not mean that you’ll be convicted. Some kidnapping claims are completely false; a skilled criminal defense lawyer can usually discredit such allegations. Get legal representation at once if you are charged with kidnapping in southern California, and put your case immediately in the hands of an experienced Orange County criminal defense attorney.

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