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Whether Conviction for Human Trafficking of a Minor (PC 236.1, subd. (c)(1)) was Proper Where Defendant was Communicating with Adult Police Officer

Did the Court of Appeal err in reversing defendant's conviction for human trafficking of a minor (Pen. Code, 236.1, subd. (c)(1)) on the ground that defendant was communicating with an adult police officer posing as a minor rather than an actual minor?

Held: Penal Code section 236.1, subdivision (c) prohibits the human trafficking of a minor. It includes an attempt to commit trafficking as part of the definition of the substantive offense. Here we consider the attempt aspect of the definition. Defendant Antonio Chavez Moses III was convicted of attempting to recruit "Bella" as a prostitute. Bella had identified herself to Moses as a 17-year-old girl, but was, in fact, an undercover detective. The question here is whether, in light of the statutory language, he can be convicted of an attempt under the trafficking statute. We conclude that he can, based on this state's long-standing application of attempt law. (People v. Moses (2020) 10 Cal.5th 893 (S258143). This case was decided on December 28, 2020.

Updated: 12/28/2020

Return to: California Supreme Court Recently Decided Issues.

 

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