New Jersey Solicitation of a Minor | Roselle Park, Union County Attorney

Solicitation of a minor is a crime that is commonly initiated over the internet and can carry serious penalties if a conviction results.  In New Jersey, solicitation of a minor is the same crime as luring or child enticement. These are just different names for the same criminal act.  A person will be guilty of solicitation of a minor in New Jersey if he attempts by any means to lure someone he reasonably believes to be a child into a car or other isolated area with the intent to commit a criminal offense against the child.  A person cannot be convicted of this crime for merely conversing with a child over the internet.  A more substantial step must be taken in order to determine the defendant’s intent to commit an offense against the child.   Additionally, the intent must exist once the meeting occurs.  If an adult simply meets a child for coffee or for some other non-criminal reason, it is also not a crime under this statute.

The penalties for solicitation of a minor are severe and are even more severe if the defendant has been previously convicted of the crime.  A first offense is a second-degree crime that carries 5 to 10 years in prison.  A second offense is also a second-degree crime, however a second offense carries requires that the defendant remain ineligible for parole for one-third to one-half of the sentence imposed.  Therefore a sentence of 9 years would require the defendant to serve three to four and one-half years before becoming eligible for parole.