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18 U.S.C. 2252 – Certain Activities Related to Material Involving Sexual Exploitation of Minors

Federal Criminal Defense Attorneys Serving Charlotte, Concord, and Surrounding Areas

There are numerous activities related to the creation, sale, and distribution of child pornography that are illegal under federal law. For example, a person may be convicted for buying or selling child pornography. A conviction for a federal sex crime can greatly affect a person’s rights and reputation, and if you are charged with certain activities related to material involving the sexual exploitation of minors, you should consult an attorney to discuss your potential defenses. The Charlotte and Concord child sexual exploitation lawyers at the Olsinski Law Firm will gather the facts and evidence needed to set forth a zealous defense on your behalf and help you fight to protect your interests.

Certain Activities Related to Material Involving the Sexual Exploitation of Minors

While there are multiple deeds related to child pornography that are illegal under federal law, 18 U.S. Code section 2252 deals specifically with the distribution and exchange of visual materials depicting children in sexually explicit acts. For example, under section 2252, a person can be convicted for knowingly using an instrument of interstate or foreign commerce, such as the mail or internet, to ship, transport, distribute, or receive any visual depiction of a minor engaging in sexually explicit conduct. It is also illegal to knowingly reproduce a visual depiction of a child engaging in sexually explicit activity for the purpose of distributing it in another state or country. Similarly, it is illegal for anyone to use any means of interstate or foreign commerce, such as the mail or internet, to receive or distribute an image or video of a child engaging in sexually explicit conduct.

Section 2252 also makes it illegal for anyone on land or in a building owned by the U.S. government or in a U.S. territory to knowingly sell or possess materials that depict a child engaging in sexually explicit conduct, or to sell or intend to sell such materials if the materials have been shipped or transported over state lines or from another country. Finally, it is a crime to knowingly access or possess with the intent to view one or more books, magazines, videos, or other visual materials that show a child engaging in sexually explicit conduct if the material has been transported by using interstate commerce or is viewed on U.S. property.

A conviction under section 2252 can result in five to 40 years of imprisonment, depending on which provision of section 2252 was allegedly violated and other factors. Notably, people can be convicted not only for the activities enumerated under section 2252 but also for attempting to engage in such activities.

Available Defenses

Section 2252 explicitly provides that it is an affirmative defense to the crime of possessing materials showing a child engaging in sexually explicit conduct that the defendant possessed fewer than three items that depicted such conduct, and the defendant quickly took the steps needed to destroy the materials, or alerted a law enforcement agency about the materials. Defenses may be available to a defendant charged under any other provision as well. For example, if the law enforcement agency that investigated the defendant did not have a warrant prior to searching the defendant’s property or exceeded the scope of the warrant, any evidence found during the search may be inadmissible. Similarly, if a defendant was interrogated without being advised of his or her rights, any statement that the defendant made may not be admissible.

Contact a Capable Sex Crime Lawyer in Charlotte or Concord

A conviction for selling or distributing child pornography may result in imprisonment and permanent harm to your reputation. If you are charged with certain activities related to material involving the sexual exploitation of minors, the attorneys at the Olsinski Law Firm can develop a strategy based on the facts of your case. We regularly defend people charged with sex crimes in Mecklenburg and Cabarrus Counties, including in Charlotte, Concord, Huntersville, Mint Hill, Matthews, Cornelius, Davidson, Pineville, Harrisburg, Kannapolis, Midland, and Mount Pleasant. You can reach us by calling 704-405-2580 for our Charlotte office or 704-918-4747 for our Concord office, or you can contact us via our online form to schedule a consultation regarding your charges.

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