Law enforcement officials have been arresting more and more people for sexual solicitation of minors, according to an article on News4Jax.com. The article attributed the increase in arrests for sex crimes involving minors on greater enforcement efforts and better technology as opposed to more offenders. Arrests for sexually soliciting a minor over the Internet increased by five times when an undercover officer was posing as the minor, while arrests for the same crime increased by 21% when actual minors were solicited.
In Florida, the Attorney General’s office has increased efforts to investigate cases involving the sexual solicitation of minors and considers the protection of children from sexual solicitations from adults over the Internet to be the office’s top priority. According to the Attorney General’s website, Florida ranks fourth in the country in volume of child pornography over the Internet. As a result, the Florida Attorney General’s Office has established the Child Predator Cybercrime Unit to protect children and investigate cases involving child pornography and sexual solicitation and exploitation of minors in Florida. Florida also enacted the Cybercrimes Against Children Act in 2007 which increased criminal penalties for conduct such as possession of child pornography and soliciting children over the Internet.
In 2007, a large Cybercrime unit headquarters was opened in Jacksonville, Florida.