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Opportunist Versus Victim: What Is Entrapment?

July 2, 2020

To face a drug charge is intimidating. After all, a drug charge can result in serious consequences. What if you believe you were a victim of entrapment?

To prove entrapment, according to the United States Department of Justice, the government must induce the crime and you must lack a predisposition to engage in said criminal behavior. What is the difference between victims of entrapment and opportunists?

Who Is an Opportunist?

An opportunist is someone who may have had a predisposition to the crime. This is a person who would readily make him or herself available to act on the crime. Even if the person has no prior criminal record, if he or she was prepared to commit a criminal act with little persuasion, then this is likely a person looking for an opportunity to sell or purchase drugs.

Who Is a Victim of Entrapment?

For someone to be the victim of entrapment, law enforcement must induce the crime. This is not a simple solicitation. Entrapment involves persuasion and coercion. An officer may plead with the victim. He or she may use sympathy or friendship to push another person into breaking the law.

These methods would have to blind an ordinary person. For instance, an officer may appeal to a person’s empathy through describing a death in the family or a sick relative who could benefit from the money offered through the criminal exchange. Any deceit or methods that would cause a regular person to ignore the law is entrapment. If you never would have committed an offense but the circumstances the officer created caused you to, then it may be entrapment.