Anyone charged with possession of child pornography faces a serious threat to one's reputation and freedom. A conviction for possessing child pornography can mean serious consequences including a felony conviction, significant fines, state prison and lifetime registration as a sex offender. Even a misdemeanor conviction for possession of child pornography carries a requirement of lifetime sex offender registration.
Essentially, child pornography is defined under the California Penal Code as material that depicts minors under the age of 18 years old engaged in or simulating sexual conduct. Importantly, child pornography does not include: drawings, figurines, statues or any film rated by the Motion Picture Association of America, nor does it apply to live or recorded telephone messages when transmitted, disseminated or distributed as part of a commercial transaction.
Being accused of this crime is a very serious matter with life-altering consequences. Call our lawyers at Ahmed & Sukaram at 866-477-0965 or email our law firm to begin building a defense to your sex crimes today.
What Are the Elements of a Child Pornography Crime?
In order for the district attorney to prove that you possessed child pornography, the prosecutor needs to prove the following elements beyond a reasonable doubt:
- The defendant possessed obscene matter;
- When the defendant acted, he or she knew the character of the matter; and
- When the defendant acted, he or she knew that the matter showed a person under the age of 18 years who was personally participating in or simulating sexual conduct.
Sometimes however, the defendant does not even know that he or she possessed the offending material. If the defendant surfs a Web page that has pornographic images, some of which include child pornography, the defendant's computer may index those photographs without the defendant's knowledge.
Alternatively, the defendant may have deleted the child pornography and no longer possessed the offending images or videos, even though the district attorney claims that he or she did. Moreover, the defendant may not have reasonably known that the images were of minors under the age of 18 years old.
Fighting Unlawful Searches and Seizures
Regardless of the actual defenses to the charge, the alleged possessor of the child pornography may have a defense due to an unlawful search and seizure of the materials by the police. If successfully challenged, the evidence of the child pornography may be excluded from use in the criminal proceedings against the defendant.
Learn More About Your Rights When Accused of Possession of Illegal Images
At Ahmed & Sukaram, Attorneys at Law, we defend individuals across the San Mateo County Area, including San Jose, Redwood City and South San Francisco on charges of possession of child pornography.
Contact us today to discuss your options and how to best prepare your defense.