- Criminal Law
Criminal Defense Lawyer John E. MacDonald, Inc. of Providence, Rhode IslandSchedule a Consultation
Possession of child pornography is a 5-year felony under Rhode Island state law. In the last few years, this offense has been vigorously pursued by the Rhode Island State Police computer crime unit and the Department of Homeland Security. A typical case starts as an investigation into one of the file sharing sites where child pornography can be found and/or traded. Once an IP address is identified as involved in the possession, request or trading of child pornography, police will ascertain the IP user’s information and obtain a search warrant for the user’s computer and electronic data. Rhode Island State Police typically execute the search warrant during the early morning hours when the target of the search warrant is at their most vulnerable. Police want to not only seize the materials containing child pornography, they also want to secure a confession from the target as to their knowing and exclusive possession of child pornography. It is rare to find a target of a search warrant who does not immediately admit to knowing possession of child pornography.
Under both state and federal law, possession of child pornography triggers the requirement to register as a sex offender.
If you are questioned or charged concerning possession of child pornography, it is imperative that you meet with an attorney with the knowledge and experience in child pornography cases. Call the the Law Office Of John E. MacDonald, Inc. to schedule a free legal consultation today: 401.421.1440.
There are multiple defenses to possession of child pornography. First and foremost, the search itself, whether based on consent or a search warrant, may be subject to a motion to suppress pursuant to a Fourth Amendment violation. Second, any admissions to knowing possession may be subject to a motion to suppress pursuant to Fifth or Sixth Amendment violations. Third, the materials seized may not constitute child pornography under state or federal law.
Fourth, was the target of the search warrant in knowing possession of the materials – ie, are there multiple users of the hardware, was the hardware purchased used, did the file sharing system put child pornography on the computer’s hard drive without the user’s knowledge. Finally, the affirmative defense of destroying the materials upon unknowingly receiving less than three images of child pornography.
If you are questioned or charged concerning possession of child pornography, it is imperative that you meet with an attorney with the knowledge and experience in this type of case. Call our law office to schedule a free consultation today: 401.421.1440.
Any person who knowingly produces, reproduces, distributes or possess an image of child pornography is subject to the penalties assigned by the state for this crime. These penalties can include fines, terms of imprisonment or both. At the state level, possession of child pornography is punishable up to 5 years in prison and transfer of child pornography is punishable up to 15 years in prison.
There are severe penalties for possession of child pornography convictions. While possession of child pornography does not carry with a mandatory minimum prison sentence, receipt of child pornography is a mandatory five year imprisonment sentence. Prosecutors will often use this leverage to extract agreed upon prison sentences.
Under federal law first-time offenders guilty of producing child pornography receive fines and 15-30 years in prison. There are also circumstances when convicted offenders carry much harsher penalties due to a prior conviction or intensified circumstances where violence or abuse has occurred.
(e) Any individual who violates, or attempts or conspires to violate, this section shall be fined under this title and imprisoned not less than 15 years nor more than 30 years, but if such person has one prior conviction under this chapter… or under the laws of any State relating to aggravated sexual abuse, sexual abuse, abusive sexual contact involving a minor or ward, or sex trafficking of children, or the production, possession, receipt, mailing, sale, distribution, shipment, or transportation of child pornography, such person shall be fined and imprisoned for not less than 25 years nor more than 50 years, but if such person has 2 or more prior convictions under this chapter… or under the laws of any State relating to the sexual exploitation of children, such person shall be fined under this title and imprisoned not less than 35 years nor more than life.
If you are being investigated, charged or arrested for child pornography in Rhode Island, Massachusetts or Connecticut, please contact Criminal Defense Attorney John E. MacDonald at 401.421.1440 for a free legal consultation.
Rhode Island Criminal Lawyers at the Law Office of John E. MacDonald, Inc. are available 24 Hours to take care of your child pornography case. Don’t leave your future to chance, contact Rhode Island Child Pornography Lawyer John E. MacDonald.
Rhode Island Child Pornography Defense Attorney Office
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