Child Grooming Offences

Being accused of child grooming can be devastating, with the potential for serious criminal penalties, as well as the likely impact on your personal life, career and reputation. It is essential to get specialist legal advice and representation at the earliest opportunity to give you the best chance of securing a positive outcome. We can offer same day appointments including virtual or out of hours if you work.

At JD Spicer Zeb, our specialist sexual offences defence team have been advising and representing clients facing the most serious charges, including for child grooming, for more than 40 years. We are on your side and will be by your side through every step of an investigation and prosecution, from the point of arrest and police interview onwards. We can also advise you before the point of arrest or being charged if you are concerned.

With our meticulous approach, detailed legal knowledge and strong personal support, we can make dealing with these upsetting charges easier on you, giving you the clear advice and robust representation you need to achieve the best possible result. We can give you the best chance of being found not guilty or of seeing your case dropped before it reaches court.

We understand the complex nature of these cases and the various types of evidence police and prosecutors rely on, so we can provide the best possible defence, making sure any flaws in the evidence against you are quickly identified and successfully exploited.

If you have been arrested or charged with a child grooming offence, you can contact us 24-hours a day, seven days a week for immediate expert advice and representation.

Our criminal defence solicitors are fluent in a variety of languages, as well as working with a number of accredited interpreters. This allows us to offer clear, effective legal advice and representation, no matter your background.

We are available to represent clients all over England and Wales around the clock, so no matter where you are or what the time, our criminal defence team can be on call for you.

For a free initial consultation on dealing with allegations of a child grooming offence, please contact our local offices in London, Birmingham or Manchester.

Need immediate legal support for allegations of child grooming? Our accredited Police Station Representatives and solicitors are available 24 hours a day 365 days a year using the emergency numbers listed at the top of the page.

Our expertise with child grooming offences

Over the years, JD Spicer Zeb has earned a reputation as one of the country’s leading firms specialising in representation for people accused of child sexual offences. Our team have handled a number of high-profile cases, so can offer experienced, sensitive advice and representation for every stage of proceedings.

We are highly skilled in the use of all types of evidence, including mobile phone data and other digital evidence, as well as forensic evidence, such as DNA. Through careful analysis of the prosecution’s case, we can identify any flaws in their evidence or arguments, helping you to build the most effective defence possible.

Our criminal defence team work with many of the country’s leading criminal defence barristers specialising in child sexual offence cases, so if court proceedings cannot be avoided, we can ensure you have the best possible representative for your trial.

Cross examining child witnesses requires a skilful and highly specialised technique. Today advocates undertaking this work must be specifically trained and accredited to do so. We have access to some of the best barristers in the country, who are not only trained to deal with child and vulnerable witnesses, but actually train others to do so.

What to do if you are accused of child grooming

If you are arrested on suspicion of a child grooming offence, you need to be sure of your legal rights to help you avoid saying or doing anything which could harm your defence.

When interviewed by the police in connection to child grooming, please remember the following key points:

  1. You do not have to answer any questions asked by the police. Whether to do so or not requires a thorough understanding of your case and how the criminal justice system works. Legal advice should be taken before saying anything.
  2. You should never answer any police questions without a solicitor present.
  3. You have the right to free legal representation.
  4. You can use the duty solicitor available or choose your own lawyer.

If you are arrested on suspicion of a child grooming offence, the arresting officers must tell you what specific offence you are accused of committing and they must caution you by using the words:

“You do not have to say anything. But it may harm your defence if you do not mention when questioned something which you later rely on in court. Anything you do say may be given in evidence.”

Following a police interview for a child grooming offence, one of the following will occur:

  • You are released with no further action
  • You are released under investigation
  • You are detained in custody
  • You are charged with a specific child sexual offence

If you are charged with a child grooming offence:

  • A date will be set for a court hearing
  • You will either:

If you are released with no further action or under investigation, it is important to be aware that you may be rearrested or summonsed to attend court at a later date.

What is child grooming?

The term ‘child grooming’ is used where a person or group of people build a relationship with a child for the purposes of manipulating, exploiting or abusing them. This exploitation can be sexual or may involve the child victim being induced to carry out criminal activity, such as transporting and/or selling illegal drugs.

Specific criminal offences connected to child grooming include:

  • Sexual communication with a child
  • Causing a child to watch a sexual act
  • Meeting a child following sexual grooming
  • Causing or inciting a child to engage in sexual activity
  • Causing or inciting a child under 13 to engage in sexual activity
  • County lines drug offences

Penalties for child grooming offences

The exact penalties for a child grooming offence will depend on the nature of the offence and the circumstances surrounding the offence. The following are the maximum possible sentences on conviction for some of the main types of criminal offences associated with child grooming.

Sexual communication with a child – 2 years’ imprisonment.

Causing a child to watch a sexual act – 10 years’ imprisonment.

Meeting a child following sexual grooming – 10 years’ imprisonment.

Causing or inciting a child to engage in sexual activity – 14 years’ imprisonment.

Causing or inciting a child under 13 to engage in sexual activity – 14 years’ imprisonment.

The penalties are likely to be more severe if the grooming behaviour took place over an extended period, where the child attempted to cut off contact with the alleged offender and where the offender was in a position of trust e.g. a teacher or sports coach.

What defence is there against a child grooming charge?

The defence options available for a child grooming charge will depend on the circumstances.

If you believe you are not guilty of the offence, we will work with you to build your case and effectively challenge any evidence brought by the police and/or prosecution. This includes using evidence such as text messages and social media messages to establish that any relationship you had with the alleged victim was entirely innocent.

If you wish to plead guilty to a charge of child grooming, we can advise you on your options for mitigating any criminal penalties. This includes considering factors such as a lack of previous convictions and remorse on your part, as well as establishing evidence of your good character and any steps you have taken to reduce the risk of further offending.

No matter how challenging your circumstances, our highly skilled and experienced criminal defence solicitors will work tirelessly to ensure that we can secure the best available result for you.

Contact our child grooming defence lawyers today

For urgent specialist advice, immediate representation or to speak to us confidentially about allegations of child grooming or any other type of sexual offence, please do not hesitate to get in touch.

You can contact our dedicated criminal defence lawyers in London, Birmingham, and Manchester by telephone on:

  • Brent & Camden London Office: 020 7624 7771
  • Manchester Office: 0161 835 1638
  • Birmingham Office: 0121 614 3333
  • City of London: 0207 624 7771 (our senior Solicitors and Partners can meet by appointment in the City)

Or email:

Alternatively, you can fill out our quick online enquiry form, and we will get back to you as soon as possible.

24/7 legal representation for child grooming offences

For immediate representation and advice on dealing with allegations of child grooming, or any other type of sexual offence, anywhere in England or Wales at any time, please contact our Emergency Number: 07836 577 556.

This page does not constitute legal advice.


For new serious cases you can email a senior partner/lawyer directly by clicking here. When you call us you can request a call back or meeting the same day with a senior partner/lawyer or Barrister.

If you believe your case is likely to have serious consequences for you now, or in the future, and you have the means to pay for this service please read more about our bespoke private fee service.