Illegal Detention, A Serious Crime

The crime of illegal detention is included among the crimes against freedom and is perfected when a private individual locks up or detains another, depriving him of his freedom of movement.

Illegal detention consists of locking up or detaining an individual, depriving him of his ability to move freely from one place to another. In this way, he is forced to remain in a certain space against his will.

On the other hand, it is also considered an illegal detention when a private individual holds a person in order to bring him/her immediately before the authority outside the cases explicitly established by law. When some kind of illegal detention occurs, it is advisable to resort to an unlawful detainer attorney, and if possible to have good experience in the field.

There are several ways in which an illegal detention can occur:

Firstly, the basic type of crime of illegal detention, which occurs when a private individual locks up or detains another private individual, obstructing him/her from exercising his/her freedom of movement. If it can be proved that this offense was committed, it is punishable by imprisonment for up to six years.

There is a minor type of illegal detention; the punishment for this crime will be less if the offender releases the person who was locked up or detained during the first three days of the abduction, provided that the abduction did not achieve the purpose of the detention. So a lesser penalty would be imposed. However, when a private individual holds another person against his will so that he can be presented immediately to the authority, the penalty will also be less, and the guilty party may be punished by a fine of three to six months.

There are other more aggravated types of illegal detention, which are the circumstances that can make the penalty more severe, as follows:

  • When the confinement or detention lasts more than 15 days.
  • When a condition or reward is requested for the release of the person detained.
  • If the guilty party has posed as a public authority or official.
  • If the victim is a minor, a person with a disability in need of special protection or a public official in the exercise of his or her duties.
  • When the offender does not indicate where he is holding or locking up his victim. This crime will be punished more severely if the person detained is a minor, has a disability, and also when this crime is committed with the purpose of infringing the freedom or sexual compensation of the victim.

For this type of detention, it is very important to have a good unlawful detainer attorney who has the immediate capacity to be able to verify what type of crime is being carried out, and thus act as quickly as possible.