These crimes are usually filed in Federal Court. Most Child Pornography is downloaded or purchased on the internet. Child Pornography investigations usually involve sting operations where a federal agent is intercepting communications on the internet. Once suspected of child pornography offenses, a search warrant will be issued for your computer. Computer Forensic Experts then conduct a thorough investigation of the hard drive of your computer. These cases are very serious and although usually filed in Federal Court, also result in the requirement that the individual register as a sex offender pursuant to state law.
In order to be guilty of any crime involving alleged child pornography it must be proven beyond a reasonable doubt that the images involved actual minors.
Child Pornography is defined as any visual depiction, including any photograph, film, video, picture, or computer-generated image or picture, whether made or produced by electronic, mechanical, or other means, of sexually explicit conduct, involving a minor. Child Pornography my also include computer or digital visual depictions that are indistinguishable from pictures of actual minors. “Indistinguishable” means that an “ordinary person viewing the depiction would conclude that the depiction is of an actual minor.” Drawings, cartoons, sculptures or paintings are specifically excluded.
There are serious mandatory minimum sentences in these cases when filed in Federal Court. There are a number of defenses to these cases. If you are charged with pornography offenses it is essential that you contact an experienced criminal defense attorney immediately.
FEDERAL COURT CRIMES: