Guide to Child Pornography Laws in Ohio

Federal Child Pornography Laws

Child pornography is widely considered to be among the most reprehensible of offenses under criminal law, and as such, accused offenders face extremely harsh penalties. Since it is not uncommon for child pornography cases to be prosecuted in federal court, it’s highly advisable for accused offenders to retain the services of a sex crime attorney in Columbus who has extensive experience defending clients in federal court.

Establishing Federal Jurisdiction

Child pornography is illegal under both state and federal law. It is very easy for a federal prosecutor to obtain jurisdiction of a child pornography case. A federal court will have jurisdiction if the alleged offense involved interstate travel or foreign commerce. Using the U.S. Postal Service or other carriers to transport child pornography across state lines or international boundaries would make the charge a federal case. In cases of the Internet used for distribution, federal jurisdiction nearly always applies. It is also possible for a federal prosecutor to bring federal charges if the child pornography material never crossed state or international borders, provided device later used for child pornography purposes had previously crossed a border.

Defining Child Pornography

Federal law has a very broad definition of child pornography. The legal definition considers child pornography to be any visual depiction of an individual under the age of 18 that involves sexually explicit conduct. Sexually explicit does not necessarily mean sexual activity. Images can also be considered child pornography if sexually suggestive. Visuals can be photos, videos, undeveloped film or videotape, electronically stored data, and computer-generated images that cannot be distinguished from a real minor.

Understanding Child Pornography Charges

A federal prosecutor might file charges of producing, distributing, receiving, or possessing child pornography. Section 2251A of Title 18, United States Code also prohibits parents and legal guardians of minors from transferring custody for the purpose of producing child pornography. Anyone outside the U.S. may be PROSECUTED UNDER SECTION 2260 OF TITLE 18 for knowingly transporting, distributing, producing, or receiving child pornography with the intent to send to the U.S.

Child Pornography Law: Possession vs. Distribution

If you think you could be under investigation for child pornography, it’s imperative to contact a sex crime lawyer right away. Your sex crime attorney can begin working on your child pornography defense and explain the types of charges that might be brought against you. For example, you might require a child pornography defense for possession of child pornography, which includes images in any format. If you’re convicted on charges of possessing child pornography, you could be facing up to 20 years in federal prison.

Another charge that might be brought against you is the distribution of child pornography. This refers to the distribution of images or videos through the mail or the Internet. Distribution of child pornography is also illegal through any other means. If convicted of this charge, you can expect to serve a minimum of five years in federal prison.

Exploring the Consequences of a Child Pornography Possession Conviction

Under state and federal criminal law, child pornography offenders face severe penalties. However, even after being released from prison, individuals convicted of this crime can face lifelong consequences. Your criminal defense attorney can ensure that your legal rights are protected, and he or she can argue for your acquittal.

Criminal Penalties

As your criminal defense attorney can advise you, a CHARGE OF CHILD PORNOGRAPHY POSSESSION means that you have been accused of knowingly receiving or possessing digital files, unprocessed film, images, videos, or any other form of media with explicit images of children. If you’re convicted of possessing these materials, you could be sentenced to up to 20 years behind bars in a federal prison.

Sex Offender Registration

Once you’ve been released from prison, you will be required by law to comply with the rules of the sex offender registry. This means that your name and contact information will be added to a database of sex offenders. You’ll be required to update your information promptly when it changes. You’ll be subject to periodic checks to ensure that you remain in compliance. If you violate these rules, you can expect to be charged with another crime.

Social Consequences

After sex offenders have been released from prison, they frequently find that the nature of their crime involves dire social consequences. Family and friends likely heard about the child pornography charge and you may become ostracized from them. There may be limits placed on where you can legally live. Since your name will be on the sex offender registry, it will likely be difficult to obtain gainful employment.

Understanding Child Pornography Offenses

Child pornography offenses are considered among the most serious and carry very severe penalties upon conviction. Your child pornography defense attorney can help you understand the specific charges. Your defense attorney may need to defend you against a charge of possession. This means that you are being accused of possessing one or more sexualized images or videos of a child under the age of 18.

Your attorney may need to defend you against a charge of distribution if you have been accused of transmitting these types of images. Since this is a federal charge, it’s best to find a criminal defense lawyer with experience handling these types of cases. Lastly, you could also be charged with the production of child pornography, which is considered to be the most serious of these crimes. You could serve 15 to 30 years in federal prison if you’re convicted.

What Are the Consequences of a Child Pornography Charge?

Prosecutors take child pornography charges very seriously. If you or a loved one has been charged with child pornography, it’s essential to get in touch with an attorney. A lawyer who specializes in these types of cases will have an in-depth understanding of the best defense solutions and the strategies the prosecutor will attempt to use. Additionally, a child pornography defense attorney in Columbus can advise you as to the potential penalties that could be imposed if you are convicted.

Prison Terms

There are different types of charges that fall under the category of child pornography offenses. For example, your defense attorney may defend you against a charge of possession, distribution, or production. If you are convicted of possessing sexualized images of children under the age of 18, you could receive a term of up to 20 years in federal prison. Some individuals are charged with distribution, which refers to allegedly disseminating child pornography via the Internet, mail, in person, or other means. Your sexual assault attorney can advise you that a distribution conviction involves a term of at least five years. Under state and federal law, those convicted of child pornography production are dealt with most harshly. You’ll receive a minimum term of incarceration in federal prison of 15-30 years.

Sex Offender Registration

After you get out of prison, you must deal with additional penalties. You’ll be required to ADHERE TO SEX OFFENDER REGISTRATION REGULATIONS. If you move, you’ll have to promptly update your information to avoid additional charges. Your information in this database will be accessible to the public. Many people convicted of child pornography charges find it extremely difficult to secure a job or find housing. Speak with your criminal defense lawyer about ensuring that you do not run afoul of these regulations.

If you’re in the Ohio area and need some more detailed information give our law office a call and we will be sure to answer all your questions.