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Defenses To Child Pornography Charges

Child pornography is a grave criminal offense in the state of Ohio and is even more serious at the federal level. The distribution of child pornography entails severe federal penalties, including imprisonment and hefty fines.

The repercussions of being arrested for child pornography are significant and can greatly affect one’s personal and professional life. However, individuals facing these charges may have several defenses available to them.

Ohio Defenses to Child Pornography Charges Attorney

When facing child pornography charges, it is crucial to secure the services of a skilled Lisbon sex crimes lawyer who will fight to protect your freedom. With an experienced Lisbon Prostitution lawyer by your side, you will have access to the strongest legal defenses at every stage of the proceedings. Trust Youngstown Criminal Law Group to advocate vigorously on your behalf.

With years of experience defending clients against child pornography charges and sexual exploitation offenses in federal courts nationwide, Youngstown Criminal Law Group is well-equipped to assist individuals residing in Columbiana County, Butler County, Warren County, Brown County, and Clermont County. Contact us at 330-992-3036 to schedule your initial consultation and begin building your defense.

Good Faith Defense in Child Pornography Possession Charges

When the defendant possesses fewer than three images of child pornography, a crucial element in their defense is prompt and good faith response. This response entails taking reasonable steps to either destroy each image or report the matter to a law enforcement agency while providing access to the images. However, successfully raising this defense requires that the defendant neither retains the child pornography images nor grants access to anyone other than a law enforcement agency.

What Constitutes Child Pornography

It is important to clarify that federal law explicitly defines child pornography as visual depictions or sexually explicit content involving children. For content to be categorized as child pornography, it must include actual minors. Hence, it becomes an affirmative defense if the defendant argues that the individuals depicted were adults and no minors were involved. Additionally, it is important to note that it is not a crime to have consenting adults portray the roles of children in a non-exploitative manner.

Exceptions for Educational and Scientific Purposes

It is essential to recognize that content used for educational or scientific purposes is exempt from being classified as child pornography. For instance, a psychology professor may utilize such depictions to facilitate discussions on the mental and emotional harm caused by these images to both the individuals involved and the viewers. Similarly, a family law professor may present these images to analyze their impact on child custody and parental rights cases.

Unintentional Possession

In some cases, possessing prohibited material can happen unknowingly and unwillingly. To secure a conviction, jurors must establish that the defendant committed the wrongful act “knowingly,” meaning they were aware of the facts or situation, rather than acting mistakenly or innocently. If the defendant cannot be proven to be the physical or digital owner of child pornography images, it cannot be claimed that they knowingly engaged in the wrongful act. Notably, this defense may be applicable when the illegal content is found on a shared computer, such as a work computer. To successfully assert this defense, it is crucial to determine the circumstances of how and when the forbidden material was downloaded and demonstrate that the defendant could not have been responsible, thus creating reasonable doubt regarding their knowing possession of the unlawful image(s).

Wrongful Police Conduct

Throughout the course of a criminal case, law enforcement agencies or prosecutor’s offices may fail to follow proper procedures, leading to potential violations of the defendant’s constitutional rights. It is possible to raise a defense based on procedural errors, which may render incriminating evidence obtained through illegal searches or the use of unlawfully obtained arrest or search warrants inadmissible in court. Moreover, it is not uncommon for law enforcement officials to exceed the scope of a search warrant and acquire incriminating evidence illicitly.

Psychological Addiction

While addiction to adult pornography is recognized, it is also conceivable for a person to develop an addiction to child pornography. However, this defense alone does not absolve the defendant from guilt but may instead serve to reduce their sentence upon conviction and potentially result in treatment rather than incarceration.


Entrapment occurs when law enforcement encourages a person to engage in criminal activity that they wouldn’t have otherwise committed. Merely presenting an opportunity to do something wrong is not enough; the officer must apply overwhelming pressure that a similarly situated person couldn’t resist.

This defense acknowledges that the offense occurred and that the defendant committed it. However, it asserts that the defendant would not have committed the offense if not for the influence of law enforcement. The entrapment defense is a crucial consideration in any criminal matter involving undercover sting operations.

Additional Resources

Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force Program: This program by the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP) helps law enforcement agencies respond to internet crimes against children.

Project Safe Childhood: A Department of Justice program combating child sexual exploitation and abuse.

Children’s Internet Protection Act (CIPA): Imposes requirements on schools and libraries to safeguard children from accessing obscene or harmful internet content.

The Youngstown Criminal Law Group: Experienced Ohio Defense Attorneys for Child Pornography Charges

Defending federal child pornography and sexual exploitation charges requires a skilled advocate. Look no further than the Youngstown Criminal Law Group, with years of success in representing individuals across the United States accused of possessing, distributing, or producing child pornography. A conviction in a child pornography case can drastically affect every aspect of your life.

Serving the greater Lisbon area, including Columbiana County, Butler County, Warren County, Brown County, and Clermont County, the Youngstown Criminal Law Group is dedicated to providing exceptional legal counsel. Take the first step by scheduling your initial consultation today. Call 330-992-3036.

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