Criminal activities that involve a combination of sexual exploitation and minors or children in Texas are heavily penalized. If caught, the offender might face a jail sentence, severe penalties or both. It is a felony criminal offense to intentionally and knowingly possess video recordings and images of children, especially if the media content depicts the child in a sexual compromising manner.
Need Legal Representation for a Sex Crime?
Call a Houston Criminal Defense Attorney today!
Jack B. Carroll & Associates, led by Houston criminal defense attorney Jack B. Carroll, is one of the leading criminal law firms for people in need of help fighting criminal charges related to possession of child pornography. To reach Jack, call 713-228-4607.
If an individual is found having six or more sexual images of a child or a minor under 18 years, the court assumes that the person had the intent to distribute the pictures. Distribution of child pornography is a serious sex crime and can attract harsh punishments.
Penalties for Possession of Child Pornography
If convicted for either possessing or distributing pornographic materials involving children, the offender is punished in several ways. For instance, a conviction for possession of child pornography can lead to:
- A charge of a third-degree felony
- A jail term for two to ten years
- A fine of up to $10,000
If there is evidence that the defendant had the intent to distribute the pornographic materials involving minors, the charges are upgraded to:
- A second-degree felony charge
- A jail sentence of between two to twenty years in the state prison
- A fine of $10000
Also, note that for all federal crimes the convict is required to register as a sex offender for the rest of his or her life on the online registry. And if convicted for the second time for possession of child pornography, the offender will be jailed for 40 years. Again, the extent of the full sentence is dependent on the severity of the crime. For instance, if the pictures found were those of children under 14 years of age, the charges move from a second to a first-degree felony. And one can be sentenced to a minimum of 5 years and maximum of 99 years in jail.
With the guidance of a Houston criminal defense attorney that has experience fighting sex crime prosecutions in Harris County, you might be able to beat the charge and sue the police department for a wrongful arrest.
Sexting and Child Pornography
Sexting is the transmission of sexually explicit photos that minors send to each other. Until 2011, the Texas laws were not strict. But today, if a child is caught sending such pictures to another minor, regardless of whether they are in a romantic relationship or not, they may be convicted of child pornography distribution, and may be charged with:
- A misdemeanor offense
- Be required to attend education classes with a parent or guardian
A Houston Criminal Defense Lawyer Can Help
Don’t Hesitate to Secure Legal Counsel
If you are accused of possession or distribution of pictures or videos involving minors under the federal or state law, it is best that you recognize the seriousness of the charges and seek the best Houston criminal defense lawyer before making any statements.