Federal Child Pornography

From the Masters of the Courtroom series on ReelLawyers.com.

Child pornography is a serious federal crime that victimizes children and doles out very severe punishments if convicted. If you have been charged with any crime related to child pornography, you need an experienced criminal defense attorney representing you in the courts. The Law Firm of Shein & Brandenburg understands the law as it pertains to your case, and will make sure your rights under the law are protected, and that your innocence of any unwarranted charges is proven.

About Child Pornography

Child pornography is defined as any visual imagery depicting children under the age of 18 in sexual situations for the purpose of sexual stimulation. This can include actual photographs or videos of minors justiceengaging in explicit sexual activity or graphic nudity; it can also include drawings, computer generated images, animations or other computer-enhanced depictions. Thus, child pornography can be created without actually engaging a minor in sexual situations, and it carries the same weight even if no child was actually victimized.

Any willful act of creating, possessing, distributing or accessing child pornography with intent to view is a violation of federal law. Those convicted of these crimes may be sentenced to up to 15 years in prison per offense, as well as being named on pertinent sex offender registries.

Defending Against Unwarranted Child Pornography Charges

Not every nude depiction of a minor is considered pornographic—there are a few exceptions. For example, if it can be shown that the image is medical/scientific in nature, non-sexually suggestive, or is part of a serious literary or artistic expression that does not exploit the child, it may not be pornographic under the law. It is also possible to be technically in violation of child pornography laws without intentionally exploiting a minor. For example, if an 18-year-old videotapes a sex act with his 17-year-old girlfriend with her consent under the agreement that it be kept privately between them, it classifies as child pornography because one participant was a minor, even though there was no exploitive intent. Finally, it is possible to be in possession of child pornography without your knowledge (for example, if someone else accessed it through your computer or if it came attached to malware or a virus). Whatever your situation, our criminal defense attorneys will investigate all circumstances surrounding the charges against you (including the possible scenarios mentioned above); we’ll advise you of your rights and your options for lodging a plea and a defense, we’ll work aggressively to defend your innocence, and file any appropriate appeals if conviction takes place.

How Registration Requirements Affect Convicted Sex Offenders

Convicted sex offenders are often subject to sex offender registration requirements. These requirements force offenders to report their locations in a database, so that neighbors will always be informed of their history. Registered offenders may be limited in where they can live and work.

Shein, Marcia (2011, May). The Changing Landscape-of Sentencing Mitigation In Possession of Child Pornography cases, The Champion, 32-40.

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