Our client, a Marine E-6, became ensnared in a law enforcement sting operation in Hawaii when he responded to a fake ad placed on Craigslist by NCIS agents. Like many other sting operations throughout the region, an NCIS agent sends photos of a woman in her 20’s but claims that she is under the legal age limit for consensual sexual relations. If a service member ignores her claims and chooses to meet, he is arrested, interrogated, and charged with attempted sexual assault of a minor. In the case of our E-6 client, a confession was made to law enforcement once he was taken into custody. Law enforcement also seized and searched his phone and other contraband items were discovered.
Our client initially sought out Bilecki Law Group to obtain a more acceptable pre-trial agreement from the government, which insisted on no less than 30 months in prison. After digging into the case’s details, Mr. Bilecki became convinced it could be fought with an entrapment defense. Not only was the NCIS agent misleading the accused by claiming she was under age, she was also far more likely to take the conversation in a sexual direction. We used this information as leverage in the pre-trail negotiations and were ultimately able to secure a pre-trial agreement with a cap on confinement of 14 months with deferral of forfeitures for 6 months so our client’s family would continue to receive pay for six months while he was in confinement.