Child Pornography Defense Attorney | Southern California

Being arrested on child pornography charges in Southern California can seem like it’s the end of your life. The stigma that an arrest for child pornography comes with often leads people to assume a person is guilty before the accused even has a chance to defend themselves. Even though you may feel like your life has been ruined please do not jump to negative conclusions until you speak to our law firm. The child pornography criminal defense attorneys at Wallin & Klarich have been successfully representing people charged with child pornography throughout California for over 40+ years. We are here to help you and will fight hard to protect your legal rights.

What is Child Pornography?

California law defines “child pornography” as any images, videos, data, computer files, or any other media that depict anyone under the age of 18 engaged in a sexual act. The creation, possession, or distribution of child pornography is illegal. It is considered a crime in California to commit any of the following acts:

  • To knowingly send, transport, produce, possess or duplicate any child pornography, with intent to distribute it (Penal Code Section 311.1 and Section 311.2 PC);
  • To knowingly develop, duplicate, print or exchange any child pornography. (Penal Code Section 311.3);
  • To knowingly hire, employ, use, persuade, or coerce a minor to participate in the production of pornography (Penal Code Section 311.4);
  • To knowingly advertise obscene child pornography for sale or distribution (Penal Code Section 311.10)
  • To knowingly possess or control any child pornography that was produced using a person under 18 (Penal Code Section 311.11).

Penalties for Child Pornography | Charges You Could Be Facing in California

Possible Punishments for Child Pornography Cases

The penalties for violation of California’s child pornography laws can be quite severe. Not only will you face the possible loss of your job, your marital or family relationships, but you could also face significant jail or prison time. Child pornography cases can be charged as either a felony or misdemeanor based upon the specific facts of the case. The following are the potential sentences you could face:

  • Posession of Child Pornography:  Under PC 311.11, it is illegal to merely possess lewd material involving minors. If a person is convicted of misdemeanor possession of child pornography the maximum penalty is one year in county jail and a fine of up to $2,500. A felony conviction however, can land you in a state prison for 3 years and could result in a fine up to  $10,000 
  • Distribution of Child Pornography: If you are convicted of a misdemeanor, you can face up to one year in county jail and up to $2,000 in fines. For a felony conviction, you could face up to 6 years in prison and up to $100,000 in fines, depending upon many factors, including if this is your first conviction or not. You can also be charged with intent to distribute child pornography to a minor (PC 311.2), which can land you up to 1 year in jail and a $1,000 fine. A felony intent to distribute charge can result in up to  3 years in a state prison, along with a $10,000 fine.
  • Sending, Distributing or Producing Child Pornography: If you are convicted for the crime of sending, distributing, or producing child pornography for commercial gain, you could spend as many as 6 years in state prison, and pay as high as $100,000, depending on the circumstances (penal code 311.2).
  • Sex Offender Registration:  Another extremely serious consequence of a conviction for any child pornography charge is that you will be required to register as a sex offender. A conviction for any child pornography charge will require you to register for the rest of your life. If you fail to register at your local police department within five days of your birthday each year you can be charged with the crime of failure to register (Penal Code Section 290) and face the real possibility of going to jail or prison.

How We Can Help Protect You | Possible Defenses

Hiring a highly experienced Southern California child pornography lawyer is the most important decision you can make when faced with a crime of this nature.  The skilled and knowledgeable child pornography defense team at Wallin & Klarich could be the difference between you or a loved one spending a lengthy prison or jail sentence or avoiding any or all of the possible consequences of a child pornography conviction. With over 40+ years of experience, we are well versed in the possible defenses to a child pornography charge.  Some common defenses we may raise, depending on the facts of your case, are:

Age of Minor Defense

The experienced Southern California defense attorneys at Wallin and Klarich may be able to show that you did not know the person in the picture or video was a minor. The strength of this defense rests on the fact that it is the prosecutor’s burden to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the age of the minor was below 18 years of age. This line of defense has proven to be a strong tool in the hands of a Wallin and Klarich attorney and has helped us secure the best possible outcome for many of our prior clients.

Entrapment Defense

Entrapment can be defined as “the action of tricking someone into committing a crime in order to secure their prosecution”. If the police engaged in entrapment and enticed you to possess child pornography, this would be a violation of your rights and would likely necessitate the charges being dismissed.

Lack of Clear Possession Defense

In many child pornography cases, a successful defense can be that the prosecutor failed to prove that the accused “possessed” the pornographic material. In some cases, we have been able to show that the accused was not actually the person in possession of child pornography. In some cases, it can be demonstrated that many people had access to the area where the pornography was found, and thus the burden of proof would fall on the prosecution to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that you were, in fact, the one in possession of the pornographic material.

Unlawful Search & Seizure Defense

In many child pornography cases, the police violate a person’s constitutional rights by searching their person or property without a warrant or probable cause. In some cases, we may be able to show the court that our client’s constitutional rights were violated. If the court grants our motion to suppress the evidence due to unlawful police conduct then the charges may be completely dismissed and you may go free. Although you may not think your rights were violated, the fact remains that there is a multitude of things that the authorities are not allowed to do, despite what they tell you, which are commonly violated. Contact us immediately if you think there is any chance that your rights were violated at any point during your arrest. Call toll-free at (888) 749-0034 for a free consultation. We will be here when you call.

24/7 Communication With Your Attorney | The Wallin & Klarich Way

When you hire Wallin & Klarich to defend you against child pornography charges, you are hiring an extremely experienced team of lawyers with a history of success

With over 40 years of experience successfully battling the prosecutors in child pornography cases, we know all of the potential defenses to a child pornography charge. We have handled hundreds of child pornography cases throughout Orange County, Riverside, San Bernardino, San Diego, and Los Angeles County, along with many other California courts. It is vitally important when you are facing a serious charge such as child pornography to have a law firm with a high degree of knowledge of the court procedures and nuances that come along with such a complex charge. At Wallin and Klarich we believe that every client deserves to be “heard” and to have a law firm fighting for them. Hiring a Wallin & Klarich attorney means we will be there to answer your questions when you call. We will always keep you informed through all steps of your case.  

Track Record of Success | Wallin & Klarich History of Winning Cases

Before hiring a lawyer when you are facing child pornography charges you will want to make certain you check out the prior successful results our law firm has achieved in similar cases. These cases are just a few of the many child pornography cases we have successfully defended. Check out some of our success stories here:

The Bottom Line

The bottom line is that child pornography charges can have a devasting effect on your life. You will only have one chance to do all you can to defend yourself from child pornography charges. You will want a  team of dedicated Southern California criminal defense attorneys on your side that will fight for your rights and turn over every stone in order to keep your liberty and freedom safe.
Contact us online or call us toll-free today at (877) 4NO-JAIL for a free phone consultation. When you call, be prepared to share the facts of your case and/or any information that you think may be useful in obtaining the best outcome possible for your case. When it matters most, call Wallin & Klarich — we will be there when you call.

Frequently Asked Questions

Yes, our child pornography attorneys have experienced many cases like this. The fact that you share your computer could be a valid legal defense for your attorney to use in your case. If you share a computer or electronic device with someone, it can be difficult for the prosecution to prove that you had knowledge that the computer you possessed pornographic material.<br> This could also be the case if you purchased a used electronic device. To protect yourself, clean the hard drive of any computer or electronic device you purchase and clear any cookies before borrowing someone’s computer.

Generally, the police need a warrant to search your electronic devices, although there are circumstances where they can search your devices without a warrant. If police request your consent to search your computer, you should respectfully refuse to provide consent. Contact our law firm immediately if you believe you were subjected to an illegal search and seizure.

One of the valid legal defenses to child pornography crimes is that the material you viewed has artistic value. So, if you were watching a film about a relationship between two young people and there is an explicit scene, your lawyer would have a valid legal defense to child pornography charges.

A 2002 Supreme Court ruling set a precedent that you cannot be convicted of a child pornography crime if the images did not actually depict minors in explicit poses or sexual acts but were altered to appear that way. So, for instance, if you see an image that shows the face of a celebrity under the age of 18 edited to appear on the nude body of a woman who is over the age of 18, you may have a valid legal defense to child pornography charges.

Yes, minors can be charged with child pornography crimes for sexting. Technology has made it easier than ever to send and receive nude or explicit images. Unfortunately, it is not uncommon among high school students to become involved in such activity without realizing the potential consequences.

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