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To Catch A Predator -- Lights, Camera, Entrapment?

8/8/2007 5:30 PM PDT BY TMZ STAFF

A high-powered celebrity lawyer representing a doctor accused of being a sexual predator went after "Dateline NBC" yesterday in a California courtroom.


Blair Berk, whose clients include Lindsay Lohan, Mel Gibson and Halle Berry, is currently representing Dr. Maurice Wolin, a prominent oncologist. The doctor was taken down by cops last year as "Dateline" cameras rolled. Prosecutors say Dr. Wolin made plans to have a sexual encounter with someone on the Internet who he thought was a 13-year-old girl. In fact, the person who was IMing Dr. Wolin was self-proclaimed "evil vigilante" Xavier Von Erck, founder of Perverted Justice.

In yesterday's preliminary hearing in Santa Rosa California, Berk grilled a cop whose department worked with Perverted Justice and "Dateline." Berk maintained that Perverted Justice got money for snagging alleged predators and therefore entrapped her client to make a buck. She claimed Perverted Justice illegally recorded conversations with her client and also said the chat logs could not be authenticated. The logs have not been admitted into evidence.

The cop who testified yesterday called the chat logs "extensive" and "extremely incriminating." In one exchange, the doctor allegedly asked to come over to her house, but added, "But you're under 18 and I'm over. We would have to be soo careful."

NBC rented the house that was used for the doctor's alleged sexual liaison.


Xavier Von Erck will testify when the prelim resumes next month. The judge will then decide whether to admit the critical logs into evidence and then determine if Dr. Wolin will stand trial.

697 COMMENTS

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676.

Debbie Mad as HELL!!!!    

SADD

2597 days ago
677.

Humbert Humbert    

A few things to consider, all you screamers who love to pound the words, "THINK OF THE CHILDREN!!!" into our heads until our ears bleed: you have no right, NONE, to judge these men. Unless you're on a jury, shut up. You're not the American Law, you're not God, you're nobody. Just a person with an opinion. Two: just because you're a parent, that doesn't mean you give up all semblance of rational thought and equality. Parenthood is not an excuse to be thoughtless. Three: the people behind this "news" segment deserve every bit of legal action taken against them. You want to throw around the word "pervert"? Fine. If these men are perverts, then that means they're sick. You don't exploit the sick. Do not. I don't remember the last time Dateline cameras showed up to someone's chemotherapy session and recorded it for all of us to watch. Four: so, Mr. and Mrs. Double-standard, it's wrong for someone to solicit sex from a 13-year-old, but where were you and your bullhorn for the premiere of the Bratz movie? Why do Bratz products sit on the shelves without you there to burn them? Where were you when Britney Spears sold millions and millions of albums? Where were you when Pepsi ads featured Britney gyrating and Bob Dole getting wood? Why is it that anyone cared when the Olsen Twins turned 18? Oh, right, because sexuality isn't black and white. Five: Where's the blame when middle and high school girls run around town wearing clothes that would make a hooker blush? Where's the blame when parents let their children display sexuality with nary a batted eye? Why is it that you refuse to acknowledge the culpability of "children" who engage in sexual behavior? Just because you're under 18, that doesn't make you automatically innocent.

Bottom line: Dateline and "To Catch a Predator" is garbage TV. Anyone who watches it should be ashamed of themselves. Those men MAY be guilty of perversion, they MAY be guilty of criminal acts, but you are DEFINITELY guilty of casting stones in a society-wide glass house. Until WE as a society stop glorifying youthful sexuality and take PERSONAL RESPONSIBILITY (you hear me, you hypocrites in the Catholic Church?) for our actions, and EDUCATE ourselves about sexuality (gee, there are those Catholic hypocrites again...), this problem is never going away. One garbage TV show is NOT the solution.

2597 days ago
678.

Sarah Silverman SUCKS!    

Every action begins with an intention. It doesn’t matter how much bait you throw under someone’s nose, if the bait isn’t something they are interested in, there’s no way they are going to bite. The idea of them being with an underage boy or girl was already within them. That is not Dateline’s doing. They just brought them out of the woodwork.


2596 days ago
679.

wwit    

He was talking to an underage female - he knew exactly what he was doing!! No, it's not entrapment, someone has to get these sick, sick, people off the streets. Parents cannot let their children out of their sight because of the crazy, weird, perverted people in our world. If this happened to one of your children, like it has to us, you wouldn't have any empathy toward people like him, regardless of their education/profession. You would want them to ROT and hope that someone in prison will do something horrible to them just as they did a young child/teen.

2596 days ago
680.

Debbie Mad as HELL!!!!    

#670 PLEASE!!!!!! You Probably A prev too.

2596 days ago
681.

Rosie's male lover    

Was Rosie O'donnel caught online with any little girls?

2596 days ago
682.

Gig    

Hey 668- Got your own little "Lolita" you are worried about being outed for molesting? There is only one cure for child molesting pigs- a bullet to the head!

2595 days ago
683.

Erich CW    

First of all, entrapment is something that law enforcement does. Secondly, entrapment is making someone do something that they weren't otherwise going to do. For example: If I had some painkillers and you saw me standing on the corner with crutches and a cast on my broken leg and a cop walked up to me and asked me to sell him painkillers and I told him no yet he kept persisting until I did... THAT would be entrapment.

Showing up a house after a long winded conversation with a 13 year old is hardly entrapment unless someone drove him there, put condoms in his pocket, and persisted to have sex with a kid.

I do believe, however, that the people at Perverted Justice get off on doing what they do. They are a bunch of fat slobs and a girl that looks like a boy playing on the internet with hopes to stop people from raping kids. I do hope that they put a dent in the losers who want to rape kids, but I can't seem to understand why they post the explicit photos of the pedophiles online, where anyone-including a child-with a computer and a modem can check them out.

Oh the hypocrisy. Kris Hansen is great, though.. Isn't he? "Why would you do this?"

2594 days ago
684.

Giada    

These lawyers who knowingly respresent guilty criminals are just as dirty if not dirtier. They are just greedy and will do anything for money and publicity. I bet she'd change her mind if someone were to try to approach her child (if she is a mother). She doesn't have to represent him. The man is a sick pervert and should be put behind bars so that they can bend over and pick up bars of soap all day long and then they'll know what that child felf like. I don't understand why someone would want to rape an innocent child. That is just sick. I can't feel sorry for people who know they are wrong. Get some help and stay away from the children.

Set up or not he is a sick child molesting pervert and should not be allowed into our society near children.

I'm loving Chris Hansen for all that he's done to try to get these sickos locked up.

2594 days ago
685.

Laura Wrzeski    

I have to say that I too instantly suspect that any and all of the individuals who come off as indignant about "entrapment" or "thought-police" are pedophiles (whether they have ever acted out or not). I can't take any of the 17% negative comments as genuine protestations against violations against civil rights of privacy or speech...and even if there could be any way to twist your brain into thinking that there might be, how could any such "right" stand against sexual exploitation of a child?

2593 days ago
686.

Laura Wrzeski    

With the name "HumbertHumbert"...not even trying to be subtle....RETCH.
I spent about six months poking around pro-pedophile websites, using my real name, in a good-faith effort to correct the rationalizations of "girl/boy lovers; Their main argument is that even very young children are "sexual beings" and they desire sexual activity with adults. These organizations assert that children can consent to sex with an adult and that such consensual activity is beneficial to the child. The pedo's insist that it is the parent's refusal to accept that their children are sexually aware and "not innocent". That children are developing sexually (duh) AND innocent seems to be lost on the pervs. They also pompously assure one-another that the trauma to a "loved" child is due ONLY to the hysterical reaction of the child's parents, therapists and law-enforcement's attacks on the child's "loved" adult. I had online conversations (primarily) with Lindsay Ashford who is the founder of the site "puellula" which "celebrates the splendor of little girls". I explained that, since the prefrontal cortex is not yet fully functional until people in their early twenties, kids are demonstrably not able to make fully responsible choices. I gave examples such as bedtime, homework, junk food, running into the street, television...and certainly not able to consent to sexual activity with an adult. I also reminded Ashford about the fact that molested children almost never report their experience to anyone until later in life when they are trying to deal with drug/alcohol abuse, depression, sexual dysfunction, difficulty with relationships...the list goes on.

The other guy I chatted with used the online name peterchristian. He said that he had done a full-length interview with Dateline, but that it had never been aired. He seemed to feel that this interview would have educated the public into an enlightened understanding about the need for eliminating age-of-consent laws, which is the one core goal of all of these pedophile organizations.

Needless to say, I didn't get anywhere with any of those creeps. They want to rape kids by stealth or by force...or by Internet. Pedophilia is being revealed more and more to be a biological affliction; hardwired. Some pedophiles live their whole lives without offending, some live their whole lives as predators. I keep up with the research and I believe within ten years we will have the answers about the ultimate cause of pedophilia, which will hopefully lead to an actual bona-fied cure. Until then, child molesters must be locked away from any opportunity to ever touch a child even one more time. Sex-offender registries and communisty supervision are a sorry, irresponsible joke.
Laura Wrzeski

2593 days ago
687.

Ryan    

You people shouting "lol you defend them, you must be one" are god damned tools. Shut up. It sounds exactly like the beginning of the Iraq war, where if you didn't agree with Bush, you were one of "them", or anti-American.

You can defend someone without being like them. We have a judicial system for a reason, and it should run its course. Innocent until proven guilty, regardless of what NBC decided to show you. If the laws aren't tough enough, or firm enough, then sitting on your fat ass watching this show isn't going to change a damn thing. Call your congressmen and change things.

There are no good guys on this show. NBC and Hanson aren't out to save the world. If this show didn't make NBC money, or if it stops making money, NBC will pull the plug on it so fast it won't even be funny. And you know it. But as long as you continue to watch it, you continue to make them money. Pretty sick that you slobs are ENTERTAINED by this (and you are, you don't watch TV if it's not entertaining)

Personally, the "sex predator" tag is entirely too broad, and needs to be a little more specific. You're 20 and have sex with your 17 year old girlfriend. Nothing wrong there, but the parents get pissed and you're convicted of statutory rape. Your read the news about a 45 year old raping a 12 year old. You're BOTH labeled as sex offenders for the rest of your life, seen as equals in the eyes of the public. Fair? No. Needs to be changed.

My .02 cents.

2591 days ago
688.

Laura Wrzeski    

Re. 02.cents-Ryan: You are absolutely correct. Until we make a crystal-clear legal distinction between consenting-but-inappropriate relationships of couples between the ages of 15 and 25 and the real predators, we will never convince the public to pass the "One Strike" laws necessary to put an end to adults who exploit children for sex. It is exactly the confusion on this "gray area" that inhibits people from fully supporting the obvious need to lock up adults who violate kids for the rest of their lives.
Believe me, I am a long-time child-safety activist. Google my name: Laura Wrzeski. I came from a loving home and have a blessed life, but I think I was born in a state of rage against injustice and cruelty inflicted on the helpless.
Ryan, you should note that every one of the men arrested in these "stings" are given their right to due process. You can read all about this on Perverted Justice's website. Google Perverted Justice. You can also read some of the chat-logs that led up to the arrests if you have a strong stomach, and if you really want nightmares, click on the site's "Internet abductions".
Think of a passion that you hold most fiercely. Imagine your passion being attacked. Imagine a third party shaking a finger under your nose with righteous accusations of "fair play" or "rush to judgement".
Ryan, these men gave days of very ugly proof that they wanted to sexually abuse children, some as young as 11 or 12.
I don't object to money being made in concert with a good cause. Money is certainly made with lots worse, such as the war you mentioned, organized religion, soda pop...?
And, yes, I do take a great deal of sadistic joy watching those filthy creeps get publicly humiliated. I especially love it when they twitch and scream when they get tased, or when they cry and beg. Oh, yes. I do. Just think of the humiliation, twitching, screaming and crying as a child endures a sexual attack by an adult.

2587 days ago
689.

mauriceperv    

This doctor needs help sure he tried to get it on with a minor but after all he has saved many people from death ,and a painful life from cancer,That doesnt mean what he did was right he made a mistake and should be punished.most likely he will be fined or at worse lose his practise as a doctor.that in my opinion would be a tragic mistake we need doctors like this to fight against cancer.we also must examine the kids who do this in real life they also must be punished,not coddled as if they are innocent babies,no they need to be equaly punished.

2582 days ago
690.

Laura Wrzeski    

Mauriceperv: Sounds like another whiny perv, pouting about being caught and blaming his victims for tempting him. Kids are known to take dangerous risks, especially in adolescence. And yes, some corrective action is no doubt taken. Adults are expected to control themselves.
HumbertHumbert ranted about kids' clothing and toys that seemed overtly sexual, again implying evil temptations were responsible for deviant behavior. 'Fraid not...maybe you'd be better off in a fundamentalist Muslim society where if a woman or child is sexually abused, it is their fault and they get stoned for it. And, perv-o, punishing kids equally as adults went out hundreds of years ago.
Hopingforchange accuses TCAP and the rest of us for punishing what he calls "thoughts and intentions". Either he didn't watch the show or he has a little problem himself. Does he realize those guys send pornographic pictures of themselves, graphic descriptions of what they want to do to the "kid", AND THEN SHOW UP??? These are crimes, not intentions; and certainly not private thoughts.
Are these people cognizant of the facts? Desperate to rationalize their own issues? WHAT?

2577 days ago
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