One crime of Criminal Defense that does not appear with great frequency is the crime of Interference with custody of children. Violent Crimes The crime is fairly self-explanatory in that it criminalizes acts committed by defendants which interfere with the parental custody rights of individuals. The crime can be found in section 2904 of the Pennsylvania Crimes Code. Additionally, the crime is fairly serious and is graded as a felony of the third degree. This means that a criminal defendant faces a maximum of seven years in state prison if he is convicted of this crime and a maximum fine of $15,000. Make sure to contact an experienced Chester County Criminal Lawyer if you are being investigated for committing the Crime of Interference with custody of children.
In order to be found guilty of Interference with custody of children in terms of Criminal Defense, the government must prove the following criminal elements beyond a reasonable doubt: Double Jeopardy
•(a) First that the accused acted knowingly or recklessly;
•(b) That the accused took or enticed any child under the age of 18 years from the custody of his or her parent, when he did not have a legal right to do so.
If the government can prove the above facts, then the defendant is guilty of this crime unless one of the following defenses applies to his case:
(1) the defendant reasonably believed that he needed to take or interfere with the custody of the child in order to protect him; or
(2) the child, who was at least 14 years old, was taken away from his parent, because the child wanted to leave the parent; or
(3) the criminal defendant is the child’s parent or other lawful custodian and is not acting contrary to another court order (such as a family court.