NYC Child Pornography Lawyer

Child Pornography Lawyer in New York City

Perhaps no other crime on the books in the State of New York brings with it such public scorn and shame as charges of possessing child pornography.   Even though there may be no evidence — and no claim — that a person arrested for such a crime had ever done anything more than view offending images or videos on a computer or cellphone within their own home, and no suggestion that the accused had ever communicated with, let alone taken steps to meet up with a minor, they will in all likelihood be facing the prospect of a jail or prison sentence should they be convicted.  This is so even if they, like most persons charged with these crimes, have no criminal records.  And along with a conviction comes the requirement to register as a Sex Offender and to suffer the potentially life-long consequences of such a designation.  

If you or a loved one is under investigation for or has been arrested and charged with possessing or distributing child pornography in New York, you should look to retain counsel from an NYC child pornography lawyer who has specific experience — and successful results — in representing individuals accused of such crimes.  A federal criminal defense lawyer who has a network of forensic experts, both digital and psychiatric, to assist in defending clients in these difficult cases. NYC child pornography attorney Fred Sosinsky has over three decades of experience and has successfully represented many individuals charged with child pornography offenses in Manhattan, Brooklyn, and other surrounding areas of New York City. These have included college professors, law firm professionals, health care workers,  students, and union members.  Where Fred has been retained early enough in a criminal investigation, he has in certain cases been able to avoid charges from being initiated.  Contact Fred Sosinsky now to discuss your child pornography charges in New York.

Rather than refer to the crime like possession of child pornography, New York terms the offense as Possession of a Sexual Performance By a Child or an Obscene Sexual Performance by a Child. These charges are harsh and are often tacked onto other charges such as sexual abuse if applicable to the case. 

Possession of a Sexual Performance By a Child 

Possession of a Sexual Performance By a Child is a Class E felony punishable by up to four years in state prison.  A person may be charged with Possession of a Sexual Performance By a Child in New York when knowing the character and content thereof, he or she knowingly has in his or her possession or control any “performance”, as that term is defined in the law,  which includes sexual conduct by a child less than sixteen years of age.   

The term “performance” has a broad definition and includes any photograph, video, play, performance, or any other visual representation exhibited before an audience. “Sexual conduct” includes sexual intercourse, oral or anal sexual contact, masturbation, bestiality, sadomasochistic behavior, or lewd exhibition of genitals. The sexual conduct at issue need not be actual; it may be simulated.

Possession of an Obscene Sexual Performance by a Child 

Possession of an Obscene Sexual Performance by a Child is a Class E felony punishable by up to four years in state prison.  A person may be charged with Possession of an Obscene Sexual Performance by a Child in New York when he or she knowingly possesses or controls any “obscene sexual performance” as that term is defined by law by a child less than 16 years old.  

New York law describes an “obscene sexual performance” as one that the average person would find predominantly appeals to the prurient interest in sex, it depicts in a patently offensive manner, actual or simulated sexual intercourse, criminal sexual act, sexual bestiality, masturbation, sadism, masochism, excretion or lewd exhibition of the genitals, and considered as a whole, lacks serious literary, artistic, political, and scientific value.

There are Defenses to Possessing a Sexual Performance of a Child

There are a number of avenues to pursue in defending these types of sensitive accusations, but above all else, your first move should be to speak with a qualified NYC child pornography lawyer.

First and foremost,  an independent review of all of the digital and electronic evidence gathered by the prosecution by a defense forensic expert will assist in determining whether the prosecution can likely prove that the offending images were viewed, possessed, or controlled by the accused as opposed to others who may have accessed the device or locations at issue. 

Second, it is often the case that a person may have files downloaded to their computer without their knowledge.  If an accused is unaware that a file is present on their computer, they can hardly be proven to have knowledge of the contents of the file.  Thus, a lack of knowledge defense is one that must be carefully considered. 

Third, there may be a defense based on the actual or good faith belief in the age of the person(s) depicted in the performance.  Expert testimony as to the apparent age may be offered in support of such a defense.

Fourth, there may be viable challenges to the means and methods by which the police searched and seized the devices alleged to contain the illicit images.  If law enforcement improperly conducted a search of a device, the evidence recovered may be suppressed and a dismissal or reduction of charges may be obtained.

Finally, rare as it may be, there is a defense present when the accused‘s profession — such as a child abuse counselor or therapist — calls upon them to view such images for professional purposes. 

Contact An NYC Child Pornography Lawyer Today

Child Pornography charges in New York are very serious matters.  A conviction will almost certainly lead to a prison sentence and at least 20 years of sex offender registration. If you have been accused of this crime, do not delay, contact NYC child pornography lawyer Fred Sosinsky for a free consultation and case review right away.


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