Prince George’s County Child Pornography Lawyer
No matter how long you possessed the illicit material in question or what you allegedly did with it, an arrest on child pornography charges is a serious matter that can have resounding impacts on every part of your life. The allegation alone could cause catastrophic harm to your professional prospects and personal reputation. Even a first-time offender could face years behind bars, steep fines, and mandatory sex offender registration upon conviction.
Put simply, this is not a situation you should try to handle without support from a criminal defense attorney who knows, through past experience and positive results in court, how best to approach your specific case. From start to finish of your legal proceedings, your Prince George’s County child pornography lawyer could enforce your rights, help construct a comprehensive defense strategy, and pursue the most favorable outcome possible from this uniquely sensitive scenario.
Child Porn Possession Charges in Prince George’s County
According to Maryland Code, Criminal Law § 11-208, it is unlawful for anyone to “knowingly possess and intentionally retain” any visual depiction of an actual child or a computer-generated image indistinguishable from a real child engaged in sexual conduct, in a sexually excited state, or being subjected to sadomasochistic abuse. In this context, a CGI depiction is only “indistinguishable” from images of real children if an ordinary person would reasonably think the former is showing an “actual and identifiable minor.” The term does not apply to cartoons, drawings, paintings, or sculptures.
A first-time offender convicted under this statute would face penalties commensurate with a misdemeanor offense, including up five years of imprisonment and/or a $2,500 maximum fine, and be required to register as a Tier I sex offender. If a defendant has been convicted of possessing this kind of material before, any subsequent charge would be classified as a felony and, upon conviction, punishable at most by ten years imprisonment and $10,000 in fines.
One viable defense for a child pornography charge is that the defendant, immediately upon possessing and realizing the nature of the material, took reasonable steps to destroy it and/or report it to law enforcement. A Prince George’s County child pornography attorney could go into more detail about this and other possible defense strategies during a private consultation.
Enhanced Penalties for Child Porn Production or Distribution
As per MD Code, CL § 11-207, a person who does any of the following has committed a felony offense:
- Induces, solicits, or knowingly allows a minor to be photographed or filmed engaging in sexual conduct or sadomasochistic abuse
- Photographs or films of a minor engaged in sexual conduct, in a sexually excited state, or engaged in sadomasochistic abuse
- Uses a computer to create simulated child pornography indistinguishable from the real thing
- Knowingly promotes, distributes, or possesses with intent to distribute, any visual depiction of child pornography
- Uses a computer to compile, transmit, obtain, sell, or distribute any information intended to facilitate sexual misconduct with a minor
A first-time offender may face ten years in prison and/or $25,000 in fines upon conviction, while subsequent convictions would have maximum sanctions of 20 years imprisonment and a $50,000 fine. Additionally, as a defense attorney could explain, convictions for distributing or producing child pornography in Prince George’s County carry mandatory registration as a Tier II sex offender as an applicable sanction.
Consider Working with a Prince George’s County Child Pornography Attorney
Child pornography charges make for complex and high-stakes legal proceedings, especially if this is not your first time being charged with this offense. Either way, it is important to have support from an experienced legal professional to ensure your voice is heard and the court conducts itself fairly.
A Prince George’s County child pornography lawyer could provide custom-tailored legal and tactical guidance from the initial investigation all the way to your case’s conclusion. Call today to discuss your options.