What is the best defense strategy if you or a loved one is charged with an internet sex-related crime?
Since the advent of the internet, many sex-related offenses have existed in chat rooms and across the internet.
Police are all over the internet, picking things up and chatting with people. They're using the Kick app to find information and various other applications.
They're chatting with people posing as underage women and getting people to agree. They're sent photograph after photograph. They'll try to meet with police officers, and then, of course, the people are being arrested and are searching for an attorney on the internet.
There is an increasingly wide range of sex crimes committed online. In response, law enforcement agencies have modified their techniques to investigate suspects who engage in an illegal online sexual-related activity.
In California, there are many several statutes defining different types of online sex crime charges, such as:
- Penal Code 311 PC – child pornography,
- Penal Code 288.2 PC – sending harmful material to a minor,
- Penal Code 288.4 PC – arrange a meeting with a minor for lewd purposes,
- Penal Code 272 PC – contribute to the delinquency of a minor,
- Penal Code 647(j)(4) PC – revenge porn,
- Sexting under child porn laws,
- 18 U.S.C. § 2251 – sexual exploitation of children,
- 18 U.S.C. § 2252 – federal child pornography.
The locations and nature of these sex crimes vary. Like rape and sodomy, many sex crimes require the physical presence of the perpetrator and victim together.
Other crimes, such as penal Code 266h and 266i PC pimping and pandering, involve the transactional use or proposition of another. Some sex crimes involve vulnerable adults, while others include minors. Our California sex crime defense attorneys will review this topic in more detail below.
What is Internet Sex Trafficking?
There have been some media reports that the internet has been a boon to the sex-trafficking industry, contributing to the almost five-million sex-trafficking victims worldwide, that include nearly one million minors.
The concern for victims is also why federal and state authorities routinely engage in sting operations using all sorts of social media platforms and fabricated websites for popular search engines to discover.
Penal Code 311.11 PC - Child Pornography Charges
Child pornography is the face of online sex crimes. California Penal Code 311.11 PC makes it a felony to possess, send, transport, duplicate, or exchange child porn material, which is any depiction of a child engaging in or simulating a sexual act.
The law's main subsection(a) clearly defines “possession” to include all usual, and many old or unusual, forms of online activity:
- “Any person who knowingly possesses any matter, information, or image, including film, photograph, negative, slide, videotape, computer hardware, CD-ROM, that contains any film involving knowingly using a minor under 18to engage in or simulate sexual conduct, is guilty of a felony crime punishable by time in county jail or state prison.”
Penal Code 311.11 child porn law also criminalizes even-broader conduct than just virtual viewing of the material. Anyone commits a child porn crime when they:
- sell, or
- transmits it.
PC 311.11, subsection(d), says, “It is not necessary to prove that the matter is obscene to establish a violation of this section.”
Federal and state investigators routinely pose online to catch a suspect in a sex crime. They will routinely hang out on the internet for the same purpose.
Most people remember the popular television show “To Catch a Predator,” a reality show that was a police sting operation. Law enforcement will also use search engines and social media platforms to catch their targets.
How Can a Sex Crime Defense Lawyer Help You?
I've been practicing criminal defense – specifically, internet sex crimes- for the past 30 years.
I worked for the District Attorney's office early in my career and was also a Superior Court judge.
Finally, in the early 1990s, I became a criminal defense attorney defending people like you.
The internet has not been around that long. Still, it has been around long enough for the authorities to become very sophisticated in tracking down those involved with sex-related offenses on the internet setting up to meet underage women on the internet.
So, if you or a loved one find yourself in the unlucky position of having been investigated or maybe a search warrant executed at your house; perhaps you've been arrested, and you've got a court date pending, pick up the phone now and ask for a meeting with Ron Hedding.
Let me put my years of experience to work for you. After a close review of the evidence, there is also a wide range of other defense strategies, such as:
- police entrapment through overreaching sting operations;
- unreasonable search and seizure of electronic equipment;
- violations of the legal rights to counsel or self-incrimination;
- the conduct of the minors was not sexual;
- charges qualify for mental-health diversion resulting in dismissal;
- prosecutor misconduct for withholding exonerating evidence;
- alteration of the evidence; and
- gaps in the chain of custody of evidence.
With so much on the line, including sex registration, prison time, embarrassment in the community, loss of your job, and a host of other issues that come along with these internet sex crimes. It would help if you had someone fighting for you right from the beginning.
I have you come into my office. We sit down, and I have you give me an honest assessment of what you know about the situation. Then we'll put together a game plan so that you can start taking control of the problem – take control of your life and see what can be done to defend the internet sex-related offense you're being charged with, or at least mitigate it.
So, if you need the best, you've come to the right place. Pick up the phone now. Ask for a meeting with Ron Hedding. We'll get into the details of what you're facing if you're charged with an internet sex crime.
What type of prison sentence might you be exposed to, and if you will have to register as a sex offender for 10, 20, or life? What could happen to your freedom? How long you're facing in prison or jail time? All of these things are a concern to you right now.
It would help if you got on things right away. We'll put together a detailed plan to help protect you, your rights, your interests, and your freedom. Pick up the phone now and ask for a meeting with Ron Hedding, who founded the Hedding Law Firm. We offer a free case review by phone or use the contact form.