Are you looking to hire a child pornography lawyer?
Your life is turned upside down when you are charged with child pornography. This severe charge can lead to years in prison and a lifetime on the sex offender registry.
If you are innocent, you must find an experienced child pornography lawyer to help clear your name. If you are guilty, it’s necessary to find a lawyer who understands your situation and will fight for the best possible outcome in your case.
Here are three things to keep in mind when hiring a child pornography lawyer:
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You Need an Experienced Child Pornography Lawyer
Our experienced lawyers at Seddiq Law have handled child pornography defense on the state and federal levels. Each case is different. Some clients tell us they are innocent, so we must fight aggressively to try and have their case dismissed or won at trial. Other clients admit to us they are guilty and want help.
Innocent Clients. You need an aggressive defense if you are clear of child pornography charges. An experienced child pornography lawyer will:
- Demand all evidence against you.
- Work with you to hire experts to present defenses such as lack of knowledge of possession or unlawful search and seizures by the police.
- Prepare winning trial strategies.
- Meet and Consult with You in a Smart and Compassionate Way.
State and federal prosecutors are extremely aggressive in child pornography cases. Your attorney must have years of experience.
Child Pornography Can Be State or Federal
Our attorneys represent clients charged with child pornography cases in federal court, Arkansas, Maryland, DC, and New York.
Each state is different, and the federal laws and punishments are different in each state.
Federal Child Pornography Law. Under 18 U.S.C. § 2252(a)(4), the crime of Possession of Child Pornography is committed when a person knowingly possesses images or videos of a minor engaging in sexually explicit conduct.
Under federal law, Sexually Explicit Conduct (18 U.S.C. § 2256(2)(A)) is defined as:
graphic sexual intercourse or lascivious simulated sexual intercourse where the genitals, breast, or pubic area of any person is exhibited;
graphic or lascivious simulated bestiality, masturbation, or sadistic or masochistic abuse; or
graphic or simulated lascivious exhibition of the genitals or pubic area of any person.
The potential maximum punishments under federal law for child pornography turn on what age the victims were.
Possession of Child Pornography involving a minor 12 or older. Under federal law, the crime of Possession of Child Pornography involving a minor 12 or older is a Class D felony, punishable by up to ten years in prison, lifetime supervised release, and $250,000 in fines.
Possession of Child Pornography involving a Prepubescent Minor. Under federal law, the crime of Possession of Child Pornography involving a prepubescent minor or a minor who had not attained 12 years of age is a Class C felony, punishable by up to twenty years in prison, lifetime supervised release, and $250,000 in fines.
New York Child Pornography Law. Child pornography generally refers to the performance of sexual conduct by a child under the legal age, typically 16 or 17, depending on the offense. Sexual conduct under New York law means both actual and simulated sexual acts, and it also includes the lewd display of genitals.
There are two categories of offenses, Promoting child pornography, and possessing child pornography are criminal offenses in New York.
Promoting child pornography. Promoting child pornography is a sexual performance by a child is a class B felony. A person is guilty of this offense when, knowing the character and content thereof, the person produces, directs, or promotes any performance that includes sexual conduct by a child under 17 years old.
A performance can include digital or live plays, movies, photographs, and other visual representations. If the content is deemed obscene, the offense charged is promoting an obscene sexual performance by a child, which is also a class B felony.
Possession of Child Pornography. A person is guilty of possessing a sexual performance by a child when, knowing the character and content thereof, the person knowingly has possession or control of, or knowingly accesses with the intent to view, any performance that includes sexual conduct by a child under 16 years old. If the sexual performance is considered obscene, the charge is possessing an obscene sexual performance by a child. In New York, possession of child pornography is a class E felony.
Maryland Child Pornography Laws. Maryland breaks these offenses down into two categories. Possession of child pornography and production of child pornography.
Possession of Child Pornography. This offense involves possessing any visual representation of a child under the age of 16 years who is engaged in sexual conduct, any form of sadomasochistic abuse, or a state of sexual excitement. Md. Code 11-208.
For punishment under a first offense, you can get up to five years imprisonment and/or a fine of up to $2,500 for a first offense. Otherwise, the punishment is up to 10 years in prison and/or a fine as high as $10,000.
Production of Child Pornography. This offense can involve any of the following:
- Being involved in soliciting, employing, or allowing a minor to engage in the production of any visual representation that shows them engaging in any sadomasochistic act or sexual conduct.
- Creating any visual representations (film, video, image) of the above-described acts, or use a computer to create, edit or store such representations.
- Possessing such pornographic representations with intent to promote or distribute them.
Md. Code 11-207.
As far as punishment, penalties for a first offense involve imprisonment of up to 10 years in prison and/or a fine of up to $25,000. Subsequent convictions can bring a prison sentence of up to 20 years and a fine of up to $50,000 or both.
DC Child Pornography Laws. Under DC law, it is unlawful to ”produce, distribute, receive, or possess of an image of child pornography (less than 18 years of age)” [18 U.S.C. Section 2252] & [DC Section 22-3102].
It is also illegal to “persuade, entice, or coerce a minor to engage in sexually explicit conduct for purposes of producing visual depictions of that conduct.”
The penalties for this offense vary, but anyone who sells or distributes pornography to a minor (under 18 years of age) faces up to 10 years or $37,500 fine for their first offense.
If you are found guilty of “employ, allow, or induce” of any minor to engage in a sexual performance, then record the action with any camera, you face up to $15,000 in fines and spend as much as 20 years in prison.
Arkansas Child Pornography Laws. Like other jurisdictions, Arkansas punishes those who personally entice minors to create child pornography more harshly than those who say, just look it up and download it onto their computer.
Arkansas law prohibits an adult from persuading or enticing a child (younger than 18) to engage in sexually explicit conduct for the purpose of creating an image. A first offense is a Class B felony. The penalty increases to a Class A felony for subsequent offenses.
Any person (minor or adult) who exchanges, possesses, views, or distributes a sexually explicit image knowing it depicts a child (younger than 18) can be charged with a Class C felony. A subsequent offense is a Class B felony.
(Ark. Code. §§ 5-27-302, -303, -304 (2019).
You Must Talk to Your Child Pornography Lawyer about Sex Offender Registration.
Sex Offender registration can be as harsh of a punishment as a jail sentence for many. For many people convicted of crimes, they can serve their time and get somewhat of a fresh start when released.
If you are convicted of child pornography you will be forced to register as a sex offender.
You must know exactly the term of your potential registration before you consider any negotiated plea.
If you took the time to review this article, we are willing to offer you a free 30 minutes consultation if you are facing child pornography charges.
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