Wohlford, Jeffrey S.
September 2013
Arizona Law Review;2013, Vol. 55 Issue 3, p805
Academic Journal
Entrapment-by-estoppel is a criminal defense founded in due process. The defense emerged over 50 years ago from the U.S. Supreme Court and has seen steady growth and acceptance. Arizona courts, however, have not yet recognized the defense. The entrapment-by-estoppel defense provides an affirmative defense only in those circumstances where a person, sincerely desirous of following the law, breaks the law after seeking an official opinion regarding the legality of proposed behavior. Acceptance of the defense in Arizona should be driven by both recognition of the constitutional imperative central to the defense and by recognition that the old legal maxim "ignorance is no excuse" becomes less supportable in the face of the state's continual expansion of laws and regulations.


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