Kidnapping and False Imprisonment are related crimes with very different penalties.  False Imprisonment occurs when a person is forcibly or secretly confined, abducted, imprisoned or restrained without a legal reason against their will.  It is punishable by up to 5 years in prison.  Kidnapping is False Imprisonment with the intent to commit or facilitate a felony.  The line between these two offenses is often very subtle and the government will often choose to charge Kidnapping, when they can only prove False Imprisonment.  Kidnapping is punishable by life in prison.

Where Kidnapping or False Imprisonment are charged and the victim is a child under the age of 13 and the defendant commits aggravated child abuse or any of a number of sexual offenses against the child, the crime becomes aggravated and the degree of punishment increases.  For False Imprisonment, the crime becomes a felony of the first degree and is punishable by life in prison.

Click here to read the Florida Kidnapping Statute

Click here to read the Florida False Imprisonment Statute

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