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The act of government agents or officials that induces a person to commit a crime he or she is not previously disposed to commit.

Entrapment is a defense to criminal charges when it is established that the agent or official originated the idea of the crime and induced the accused to engage in it. If the crime was promoted by a private person who has no connection to the government, it is not entrapment. A person induced by a friend to sell drugs has no legal excuse when police are informed that the person has agreed to make the sale.

The rationale underlying the defense is to deter law enforcement officers from engaging in reprehensible conduct by inducing persons not disposed to commit crimes to engage in criminal activity. In their efforts to obtain evidence and combat crime, however, officers are permitted to use some deception. For example, an officer may pretend to be a drug addict in order to apprehend a person suspected of selling drugs. On the other hand, an officer cannot use chicanery or Fraud to lure a person to commit a crime the person is not previously willing to commit. Generally, the defense is not available if the officer merely created an opportunity for the commission of the crime by a person already planning or willing to commit it.

The defense of entrapment frequently arises when crimes are committed against willing victims. It is likely to be asserted to counter such charges as illegal sales of liquor or narcotics, Bribery, Sex Offenses, and gambling. Persons who commit these types of crimes are most easily apprehended when officers disguise themselves as willing victims.

Most states require a defendant who raises the defense of entrapment to prove he or she did not have a previous intent to commit the crime. Courts determine whether a defendant had a predisposition to commit a crime by examining the person's behavior prior to the commission of the crime and by inquiring into the person's past criminal record if one exists. Usually, a predisposition is found if a defendant was previously involved in criminal conduct similar to the crime with which he or she is charged.

When an officer supplies an accused with a tool or a means necessary to commit the crime, the defense is not automatically established. Although this factor may be considered as evidence of entrapment, it is not conclusive. The more important determination is whether the official planted the criminal idea in the mind of the accused or whether the idea was already there.

Entrapment is not a constitutionally required defense, and, consequently, not all states are bound to provide it as a defense in their criminal codes. Some states have excluded it as a defense, reasoning that anyone who can be talked into a criminal act cannot be free from guilt.


n. in criminal law, the act of law enforcement officers or government agents to induce or encourage a person to commit a crime when the potential criminal expresses a desire not to go ahead. The key to entrapment is whether the idea for the commission or encouragement of the criminal act originated with the police or government agents instead of with the "criminal." Entrapment, if proved, is a defense to a criminal prosecution. The accused often claims entrapment in so-called "stings" in which undercover agents buy or sell narcotics, prostitutes' services, or arrange to purchase goods believed to be stolen. The factual question is: Would Johnny Begood have purchased the drugs if not pressed by the narc?

See: entanglement, involvement


encouraging a person to commit an offence to establish a prosecution. It is not a defence in the UK. However, the authorities should not commit crimes to trap the criminals. In the USA there has long been established a defence of entrapment where undercover police positively promote a crime that would not otherwise have occurred. The defence will not, however, be competent where policemen have merely joined an illegal practice - for example, seeking to be supplied with heroin while in the company of drug addicts with the same purpose.
References in periodicals archive ?
It is thus plausible that compression of these blood vessels, as seen in entrapment neuropathies, will result in dysfunction of the affected nerves.
Obstetricians have to be skillful with accurate techniques of vaginal breech assistance and breech extraction because such techniques are also appropriate to deliver a baby during cesarean section by using the right technique which can facilitate delivery and avoid injuries to the baby, moreover a ready to use uterine relaxing agent should be available in the operating room in order that it can be promptly used when abnormal uterine contraction causing fetal entrapment and prevent unnecessary incisions like inverted T or low midline "classical incision" in a women who needs further pregnancy, as this incisions have its own complications in future pregnancies.
Entrapment neuropathy of the median nerve in the carpal tunnel: Bilateral entrapment was found in 72.
Part I shows how entrapment wound up in the criminal substance category by historical happenstance, on account of the timing of when the United States Supreme Court first considered the defense, before the Warren Court's revolution in criminal procedure.
The Australian approach to entrapment relies on procedural and evidentiary remedies, typically through the exclusion of evidence, but has given only limited consideration to the effect of entrapment-type practices on sentencing.
10,34,35,37) It is at this point as well as within the adductor canal where the saphenous nerve is most susceptible to entrapment.
This Article is primarily historical and descriptive, but it is animated by the belief that entrapment ought to play a more prominent role in discouraging highly invasive, abusive, or fundamentally misguided law enforcement practices.
Certain investigative techniques used by law enforcement raise the likelihood of the assertion of an entrapment defense.
We present an unusual form of this syndrome caused by hypertrophy of the plantaris muscle tendon that produces the entrapment.
This is important in avoiding potentially dangerous entrapment from defective covers.