What is Kidnapping?
Kidnapping is the act of forcefully taking a person to an undisclosed location against their volition with the intention of committing more crimes. Kidnapping can be committed for the following reasons:
- To inflict pain on the victim
- To bring government operations to a halt
- To ask for ransom
- Deprive a parent/guardian of their custody on a child
Kidnapping Defense Attorney
If charged with kidnapping, the penalties for conviction are dire. As such, you should contact a criminal defense attorney immediately. He/she will review your case and prepare the best defense. He/she will also represent you in court during the trial process.
Jail Time for Kidnapping
In NY second degree kidnapping is considered a class B violent felony. The jail time for this is a mandatory 5-25 years imprisonment. In some cases, the court may fine the offender at least $5000 or two times the amount the offender gained by committing the crime.
First-degree kidnapping is more serious and attracts 15-25 years mandatory imprisonment and a maximum of lifetime imprisonment. The offender may also be fined a minimum of $5000 or two times the amount of money the offender gained by committing the crime.
Aggravated kidnapping is when a kidnapper causes bodily injuries on the victim. These may include injuries caused by deadly weapons, starvation or even sexual assault. Kidnapping that results in homicide is also considered an aggravated kidnapping.
Aggravated kidnapping would be a first-degree crime if the crime were premeditated or malicious. It is punishable by 25 years up to a lifetime imprisonment. When charged with aggravated kidnapping, some of the most common defenses are victims consent, personal defense and assault as an official act.
A conviction on aggravated kidnapping has a permanent imprint on your records. Aggravated kidnapping is a felony that cannot be expunged from criminal records hence remains permanent in your background check even after serving your sentence. You can also lose your public rights such as the right to vote or the right to serve in a jury.
Charged with Kidnapping
A kidnapping charge must fulfill the following elements:
- Forcefully removing a person from one place to another (this includes deception and coercion)
- Confining a person against their volition
- Confining a person in an undisclosed location
- Intention to ask for ransom or commit further crimes with the victim
Seeing that kidnapping is a felony, the charges are tried through a jury trial in a federal court. The prosecutor must prove beyond reasonable doubt that the defendant is guilty. Both the accused and the prosecutor present their evidence and arguments in the court with each cross-examining the other. The jury in consultation with the judge analyzes the evidence presented in the court before reaching a verdict. Once convicted, the defendant is sentenced to either or more of the following:
- Five years – lifetime imprisonment
- Fines as determined by the court