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Criminal Jury Instructions

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6.11-4  Sale or Buying of a Child -- § 53-21 (a) (3)

Revised to December 1, 2007

Note:  This statute criminalizes both sides of the transaction.  Tailor the instruction to specify whether it is the seller or the buyer being prosecuted.

The defendant is charged [in count __] with sale of a minor child.  The statute defining this offense imposes punishment on any person who <insert as appropriate:>

  • permanently transfers the legal or physical custody of a child under the age of sixteen years to another person for money or other valuable consideration.

  • acquires or receives the legal or physical custody of a child under the age of sixteen years from another person upon payment of money or other valuable consideration to such other person or a third person.

For you to find the defendant guilty of this charge, the state must prove the following elements beyond a reasonable doubt:

Element 1 - Age of child
The first element is that at the time of the incident, the child was under the age of sixteen years.  This means that the child had not yet had (his/her) sixteenth birthday.

Element 2 - Custody transferred
The second element is that the defendant <insert as appropriate:>

  • transferred the legal or physical custody of the child to another person.

  • acquired or received the legal or physical custody of the child from another person.

<Insert specific allegations of transaction.>

Element 3 - For consideration
The third element is that <insert as appropriate:>

  • the transfer was for money or other valuable consideration.

  • the acquisition or receipt was made upon payment of money or other valuable consideration to another person.

<Insert specific allegations of consideration.>

Conclusion

In summary, the state must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that 1) the child involved in the transaction was under 16 years of age, 2) the defendant <insert specific allegations of transaction>, and 3) (the transfer was made for money or other valuable consideration / the child was acquired upon the payment of money or other valuable consideration to <insert name of person>.

If you unanimously find that the state has proved beyond a reasonable doubt each of the elements of the sale of a minor child, then you shall find the defendant guilty.  On the other hand, if you unanimously find that the state has failed to prove beyond a reasonable doubt any of the elements, you shall then find the defendant not guilty.

Commentary

The statute provides an exception for any transfer or acquisition of a child that would constitute an adoption proceeding, if such proceeding complies with the provisions of chapter 803.
 


 

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