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NYC Female Genital Mutilation Lawyers

New York’s penal code defines the crime of female genital mutilation as the circumcision, excision, or infibulation of any piece of the clitoris or labia of a child under the age of eighteen. This charge also applies to parents and guardians of children under the age of eighteen who consent to having any part of the clitoris or labia infibulated, excised, or circumcised. Licensed medical practicitioners and midwives have a defense if they perform actions that otherwise would be defined as female genital mutilation.

Genital mutilation is classified as a sex crime under New York’s penal code. It is a class E felony. When a person is convicted of committing female genital mutilation, they will face a sentence of up to four years imprisoned. For this reason, it’s important to contact a New York attorney immediately after you’re arrested and charged. Spodek Law Group is a group of lawyers with extensive experience in criminal defense.

Definition of Female Genital Mutilation

Infibulation, excision, and circumcision are terms referring to the modification or the removal of part or all of external female genitalia. They also describe closing a vagina. Circumcision is usually associated with procedures performed to remove a baby boy’s foreskin, but female circumcision involves total or partial clitoris removal. Excision refers to the total or partial removal of both the labia minora and the clitoris. Infibulation, the most severe kind of mutilation, involves all external being removed and the sides of the vulva being stitched together.

Some cultures perform genital mutilation on young girls in order to prevent premarital sexual activity. But genital mutilation has been considered to cause extreme harm to a child’s mental and physical health. The overall procedure is often traumatic and painful, especially when performed without antiseptics or anesthesia.

Arrest and Arraignment

When you’re accused of genital mutilation, a law enforcement officer will take you into custody. You might be issued a Desk Appearance Ticket in lieu of an arrest if you lack a prior criminal record and the particular charge is a misdemeanor or violation. Usually a DAT won’t be issued regarding a felony, but certain exceptions are made for class E felonies. A DAT is a ticket which states your charge and where and when you’ll be required to appear in court to be arraigned. You must appear at the appropriate time. Failure to appear will result in an arrest warrant being issued.

The arraignment is the hearing at the court where you’ll hear the charges for the first time. It’s possible that the prosecution will bring additional charges against you on top of the female genital mutilation charge. Common additional charges are endangering the welfare of a child and varying child abuse charges. It’s also possible that you will be charged with female genital mutilation on a federal level. Federal statutes about genital mutilation mirror New York’s.

Bail is the other thing that will be determined at your arraignment. The judge will either decide that you should be held without bail or set a bail. You’ll be told the date of your next court appearance. It’s required to appear at court during the preset times. Otherwise, a warrant will be issued for your arrest.

You might have the option of a plea deal with the prosecution. Plea agreements generally involve the reduction or dismissal of some charges in exchange for pleading guilty to a less severe charge. When plea agreements are used, trials aren’t necessary. Pleas can also happen during the trial, and in these cases trials won’t proceed to verdicts.

Your attorney will examine your case and discuss your options with you.

by Leonard on Spodek Law Group
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