Kidnapping Law & Legal Definition


Kidnapping is generally defined as the abduction of another person with intent to:

  1. Hold him for ransom or reward; or
  2. Use him as a shield or hostage; or
  3. Accomplish or aid the commission of any felony or flight therefrom; or
  4. Inflict physical injury upon him, or to violate or abuse him sexually; or
  5. Terrorize him or a third person; or
  6. Interfere with the performance of any governmental or political function.

Abduction may be made by secreting or holding a person in a place where he is not likely to be found, or using or threatening to use deadly physical force. Unlawful imprisonment is similar to kidnapping, but involves the restraint of movement of a person, as opposed to an abduction. Laws vary by state, so please consult the law in your area to determine applicable requirements.