Post Content

In two decisions released today, Comm. v. Disler and Comm. v. Filopoulos, the Supreme Judicial Court has interpreted the Child Enticement Law, MGL c.265, § 26C to require the Commonwealth to affirmatively prove intent to lure an underage individual. The decisions hold, in part:

  1. “The statute surely does not prohibit specific words. It also does not ban anyone from communicating with adults or minors about sexual topics, even through indecent language.” “What the statute does require in addition to enticing words or gestures…, is that the person who entices does so with the intent to violate one or more of the enumerated criminal statutes.”
  2. It is “of no consequence that [the “child” with whom the defendant was communicating] was not a real person, because ‘factual impossibility is not a defense to a crime.'”
  3. “The Commonwealth is required to prove beyond a reasonable doubt, as an element of the crime of child enticement, that the defendant intended that his advances be directed to an underage person. ” “This approach would not require that the Commonwealth prove that the defendant knew the exact age of the child. However, the defendant could not be found guilty unless the Commonwealth proves that his intention was to direct his sexual advances to an underage individual, i.e., an intent to do a criminal act. Intending to have consensual sexual relations with another adult would not provide the requisite criminal intent, even if it turns out that the object of the defendant’s advances was in fact a child.”

Written By:


Recent Posts

New Law Gives Added Protections for Persons with Disabilities posted on Feb 20

Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker signed a new law on February 13, 2020 which gives more protections to individuals with developmental and intellectual disabilities.  Chapter 19 of the Acts of 2020 establishes a registry for caretakers in Massachusetts who have been found to have caused serious physical   …Continue Reading New Law Gives Added Protections for Persons with Disabilities

Real Estate Recording Fees to be Increased posted on Dec 10

Under Massachusetts General Laws chapter 44B section 8,  real property conveyance documents recorded at the Registry of Deeds are subject to a Community Preservation Act surcharge.  This law was amended by chapter 41 sections 29 and 30 of the Acts of 2019.  Effective December 31,   …Continue Reading Real Estate Recording Fees to be Increased

Portraits in Massachusetts Law: Lucy Stone posted on Nov 13

Portraits in Massachusetts Law: Lucy Stone

Portraits in Massachusetts Law is a regular feature of Massachusetts Law Updates. These pages provide links to biographical information abut people who have been particularly important in legal history in Massachusetts, as our government took shape in the cauldron of the American Revolution and grew and changed throughout   …Continue Reading Portraits in Massachusetts Law: Lucy Stone