Kidnap and False Imprisonment

Kidnap and false imprisonment is defined by detaining somebody against their will and is considered by the Courts to be a very serious crime. Although the offences have their own sentencing guidelines, they are often charged with other offences which can make kidnap and false imprisonment an offence that can lead to a lengthy prison sentence. If you have been accused of committing kidnap or false imprisonment, it can have a negative long term impact on your life.

At Cartwright King, we take a non-judgemental approach to our client’s cases and acknowledge your right to expert legal representation. If you have been accused of committing either kidnap or false imprisonment, it is imperative that you seek expert legal advice at your earliest convenience to put your argument forward. Our acclaimed Criminal Defence Solicitors are available to support you through the legal process step by step and will represent you in court if necessary.

Free Police Station advice and initial telephone consultation

Everyone has the right to free legal advice when at the Police Station. Our experienced lawyers are available at any time of day or night to help you and make sure your position is protected and that your defence is properly presented. If you are arrested remember to tell the Police that you want to be represented by Cartwright King. Our highly skilled Criminal Defence team are here to take the worry off your hands. We can also provide an initial telephone consultation to see how we can assist in your case. Please call us on 0808 168 5550 or email

Kidnap and false imprisonment and the law

Kidnap is an offence that can be committed through a variety of actions but it is defined as detaining somebody against their will. Put simply, in order for this offence to be committed, there must be no consent by the victim. Examples of kidnapping can therefore include refusing to let your partner leave the house, planned kidnapping for ransom and/or political reasons or a parent taking custody of their child in breach of a Court order. Although kidnap is a very serious offence that can only be heard in the Crown Court, quite often aggravating features will be taken into account which include, but are not limited to the following:

  • How much planning was involved
  • If any violence took place
  • The vulnerability of the alleged victim
  • If you were in possession of a weapon
  • If other offences were committed
  • If there was a ransom involved
  • How many perpetrators were involved

In relation to the law surrounding kidnapping, it is often the case that offenders are charged with other offences arising from the same events, such as assault. The Courts will take the circumstances of the respective alleged kidnap very seriously and will always look to see if any other offence has been committed.

If when someone is detained against their will, they are held for hours or days, the offence is most likely to be charged as false imprisonment. This offence can also be committed when someone is detained by the police or others acting outside their powers.

If you have been accused of either kidnap or false imprisonment, it is vital that you obtain highly experienced expert legal advice immediately. The earlier in the proceedings that our Criminal Defence team are involved, the more likely it is that we will be able to positively affect the outcome in your case.

What sentence could you face?

Kidnapping and false imprisonment are very serious offences which can only be heard at the Crown Court. They are “common law” offences with a maximum sentence of life imprisonment.

If you have been charged with either kidnap or false imprisonment, it is essential that you seek expert legal advice as early as possible. If arrested, you are entitled by law to be legally represented at the Police Station. You should always insist that the Police contact Cartwright King and should not speak to them until you have had chance to consult with one of our experienced team. Cartwright King’s Criminal Defence Solicitors are available to advise you day and night through the legal proceedings and represent you in court if necessary making sure that the strongest defence case is put forward for you. They will also advise about your right to appeal should the need arise.

How can we help you?

If you or somebody you know has been accused of committing either kidnap or false imprisonment, our experienced Criminal Defence Solicitors are available to advise you throughout the entire process and build a strong case for your defence. We promise to:

  • Advise you throughout the entire process
  • Treat your case in a non-judgemental, sensitive manner
  • Seek legal aid for you subject to your finances
  • Deal confidentially with any concerns you may have
  • Represent you in interview under caution by the police 
  • Do our utmost to keep your case out of the public interest and the media
  • Prepare and collate any and all documentary evidence that may be required
  • Represent you in both Magistrates and Crown Court as necessary
  • Take the worry off your hands
  • Prepare an appeal if necessary

Our team are highly ranked in the Legal 500 and Chambers and Partners guides. We have extensive experience in successfully defending those who have been accused of committing either kidnap or false imprisonment by our acclaimed Criminal Defence Solicitors.

Legal Aid

At Cartwright King our experienced lawyers will always advise you whether or not Legal Aid is available to fund your defence. In order to be eligible you have to be able to pass two tests;

  • First you must show that it is in the interests of justice that Legal Aid be granted to you. This might be because to establish your case will involve expert cross examination of witnesses by our lawyers, or because you are at risk of imprisonment, or that you suffer from some disability.
  • Secondly you must pass a means test. This is based on the weekly income of yourself and your partner. There are slightly different rules depending on whether your case is to be heard at the Magistrates or Crown Court and the complexity of the provisions. Regardless, we are happy to take your details and advise whether you might qualify.

If unfortunately you do not qualify for Legal Aid we will always provide a competitive quotation to deal with your case on a private basis and can agree a payment plan with you to assist you and your family secure the best possible representation for you.

Why Choose Us?

At Cartwright King, our solicitors understand the devastating consequences that being accused of committing kidnap or false imprisonment can cause for you and your long term future. We are available to support you from the outset, explaining everything that is happening to you along the way and making a strong argument for your defence.

How to make contact

Always insist on representation by one of our lawyers if you are arrested. Remember that advice at the Police Station is free and will not delay your release.

If you require legal advice or if you would like a no obligation, free initial telephone discussion, then please call us on 0808 168 5550. Alternatively you can email the Criminal Defence team on and we will get back to you as soon as possible.

Our Criminal Defence Solicitors can provide advice and are happy to meet at a time and location that suits you. We also have a network of offices in BirminghamBedfordBoltonDerbyLeedsLeicesterLondon TempleLondon Fleet StreetLutonManchesterMiddlesbroughMilton KeynesNewcastleNorthamptonNottinghamOxfordSheffield and Worcester.


"The best criminal defence you can get"

Chambers & Partners

"The professionalism, understanding, support and belief shown by the team throughout provided a lifeline at a time when it was most needed."


“Consistently involved in top-level work within the region. Continues to set the standard for criminal work.”

Chambers & Partners

“Excel in providing quality advice and representation.”

Legal 500

For further information please get in touch with our dedicated team.

You can always call us on 0808 168 5550 or email on


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