Child Pornography Attorney in Houston, Texas
Child pornography offenses are serious charges. These offenses rank among the most heavily prosecuted crimes, with some having mandatory prison terms and hefty fines if convicted. Your reputation, career, and freedom are on the line.
With so much at stake, you will need a skilled Texas criminal defense lawyer from Scott M. Brown & Associates who is willing to take the time to understand your situation, investigate the facts of your case, and work hard to provide the aggressive defense you need. Contact our criminal defense law firm now to arrange for a consultation to discuss your legal options.
Why Do I Need a Child Pornography Attorney in Texas?
An accusation, investigation, or criminal charge of child pornography is devastating and causes emotional stress and fear. You might feel that your personal and professional life is damaged beyond repair. State and federal child pornography convictions carry a heavy social stigma and severe criminal penalties. If you have been charged with possession, receipt, or distribution of child pornography, you need a reliable Houston child pornography attorney on your side to help you fight the criminal charges and avoid a conviction.
At Scott M. Brown & Associates, we have worked on countless cases in and out of the courtroom and defended clients charged in state and federal child pornography cases and other sex crimes. Not only do we have the years of experience required to face these challenging cases, but we also have the required knowledge and expertise. When you hire our legal team, you can expect a criminal defense attorney who will:
- Investigate to find any evidence that might help your child pornography charge
- Advocate zealously on your behalf at trial
- Explore all possible child pornography defense strategies
- Make sure you understand the implications of accepting or rejecting a plea bargain
- Negotiate with prosecutors to have your child pornography charge downgraded or dismissed
We believe that everyone is entitled to a strong defense, and we are dedicated to protecting the rights of the accused. We will give your case the attention it deserves. Contact our law office today to schedule an initial consultation with our trusted Texas criminal defense lawyers.
What is Child Pornography?
Child pornography is a unique area of law that can be charged as both a state and federal crime. Under Texas Penal Code Section 43.26, an individual may be charged with promotion or possession of child pornography when they intentionally or knowingly possess visual material depicting a child under 18 years old engaging in sexual conduct. The term “sexual conduct” is defined as:
- Simulated sexual intercourse – having the appearance of sexual intercourse
- Sexual intercourse – penetration of the female organ by the male organ
- Deviate sexual intercourse – contact between the genitals of one person and the mouth or anus of another person
- Certain forms of lewdness – showing the genitals, the anus, or any part of the (female) breast below the top of the areola
- Bestiality – sexual contact between a person and an animal
- Sadomasochism and masturbation
It is against the child pornography law to create, disseminate, or promote materials depicting any sexual conduct by any visual representation, including photography, motion pictures, dances, and plays. Under Texas law, it is also a crime to possess child pornography and to possess it with the intent to promote or distribute it.
Defending this criminal charge can be difficult. It takes an exceptional knowledge of sex crimes and how state and federal prosecutors prepare cases. If you have been accused of child pornography, it is crucial to seek legal advice from a credible Houston child pornography attorney as soon as possible to help you know your rights and defend your liberty.
What are the Penalties for Child Pornography in Texas?
The United States has very tough child pornography laws. Possessing even one image depicting a child engaged in sexual conduct can result in severe consequences. A top-ranking Houston, TX, child pornography defense attorney can examine the facts in your case and ensure that all possible defenses are pursued to avoid harsh penalties of a conviction.
The offense of possessing any photograph, film, videotape, slide, negative, or video reproduction of child pornography is a third-degree felony. It is punishable with 2 to 10 years in prison and a maximum $10,000 fine.
When an individual intentionally or knowingly possesses child pornography with the intent of promoting it, then they are guilty of a second-degree felony. It is punishable with 2 to 20 years in prison and up to $10,000 in fines.
In addition, an individual convicted of possession or promotion of child pornography is required to register as a sex offender for life. Furthermore, anyone who fails to comply with a requirement under the Texas sex offender registration program is guilty of a felony offense. Other consequences of a child pornography conviction include:
- Difficulty finding employment
- Obstacles in applying for college
- A permanent criminal record
- Denial of a visa, permanent residency, citizenship, or deportation
- Loss of the right to own a firearm
- Loss of child custody or visitation
- Losing the right to vote
Need legal help in Texas?
Be it family law, divorce, criminal defense, or personal injury — our Texas family law attorneys are here to help. We are results-driven, and we work tirelessly for our clients.
Our Houston family law and divorce attorneys have been providing compassionate and personalized legal services in Texas. Scott M. Brown is a certified family law specialist by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization.
What are the Possible Defenses Against Child Pornography Charges in Texas?
Being accused of child pornography does not necessarily mean that you are guilty of a sex crime. It is crucial to remember that you are innocent unless proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. Many valid defenses may apply in your situation, so you must take action to protect your rights immediately by consulting our qualified child pornography lawyer in Houston, TX.
Defenses to child pornography charges in Texas depend on the circumstances of each case and on the specific sex crime with which you were charged. The following defenses may be available in a child pornography case:
Illegal Search and Seizure
You could use this defense if your belongings were searched and seized illegally. Law enforcement officers often make procedural errors that violate a person’s Fourth Amendment constitutional rights. When the police search your computer, mobile phone, or other belongings and seize evidence without a warrant and/or without probable cause, the evidence collected can be suppressed and excluded from being used against you at trial.
Lack of Knowledge or Intent
One of the defenses against a child pornography case is lack of knowledge or intent. The important thing is to establish that you did not possess child porn to your knowledge. You may argue that you accidentally received the porn through email or by clicking on something on a website. Your criminal defense lawyer can establish this defense by showing the minimal time you spent on that particular website.
Entrapment often happens when police run a child porn sting operation. If the nature of the sting operation induces a person to commit the offense being charged, it can provide a valid defense. Your defense is that you would not have committed the child pornography offense if the police had not contacted you and persuaded you to do so.
“Not Child Porn” Defense
In a child pornography case, the prosecution must be able to prove that the subject of the material was under 18. Material cannot be considered child porn if the subject of the content is identified to be a non-minor (18 years old or older).
Although claiming a psychological addiction to child porn is not a winning defense, there is a possibility to minimize your sentence if you are convicted. Instead of imprisonment, a sentence may include a treatment program for sex offenders suffering from a child porn addiction.
Call Our Seasoned Houston Child Pornography Attorney Now!
Child pornography carries a significant stigma, and some people may judge you based solely on unsubstantiated allegations. The consequences of this type of sex charge can turn your world upside down. A criminal conviction for possession or distribution of child pornography can potentially destroy your personal and professional life if your case is not handled appropriately
If you’ve been arrested for possessing or distributing child pornography, it is essential to seek legal advice from our experienced Houston TX child pornography attorneys at Scott M. Brown & Associates. They will fight aggressively to defend your freedom and your future. Our criminal defense law firm will carefully examine the facts of your case and diligently work to help you overcome false allegations or reduce the punishment. Our legal team will conduct thorough investigations in preparation for trial to minimize or avoid any consequent consequences.
Schedule an initial consultation with our competent criminal defense lawyers now to get started with your defense.