Satawa Law, PLLC
POSSESSION OF CHILD PORN
Child pornography is illegal, both under Michigan law and federal law, and you may actually be charged in both state and federal prosecutions. The penalties in federal court for possession of child pornography are much harsher, and the rules of evidence tend to be more favorable to the prosecution. The state of Michigan defines possession of child pornography as merely viewing sexually-abusive material on a computer which involves a minor. The courts stated that viewing child pornography on a computer screen amounts to “constructive possession” as it is within the viewer’s power to exercise control over such viewing. The attorneys of Satawa Law are extremely knowledgeable in defending child pornography cases at the state and federal level. If you have been charged with possession of child pornography, it is imperative you retain the services of an experienced sex crimes defense attorney before it goes one step further.
DISTRIBUTION OF CHILD PORN
Both possession and distribution of child pornography is an especially serious crime in the state of Michigan. Federal law defines child pornography as any visual depiction, whether a photography, film, video, computer or computer-generated image of sexually explicit conduct which involves the use of a minor. Even if the image in question has been computer-generated, adapted or modified to appear that a minor is engaging in sexually explicit conduct and is virtually indistinguishable from the real thing, it is still considered child pornography. It is further considered illegal to produce, distribute, receive, or possess with intent to distribute any such images. The penalties for distribution of child pornography can depend somewhat on the number and type of images found on the defendant’s computer.
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Mark Satawa believes that the user who just happened to click on an offending photo while surfing the Internet is not the real culprit; the people who produce and distribute the information and photographs are the real offenders. Nevertheless, judges routinely impose extremely harsh sentencing on the end users of child pornography, often because of the widely-held belief that people who possess such material victimize children. In truth, this belief has never been proven, and the person who possesses a photograph is not directly contributing to the suffering of the actual victim. Not only could a person charged with possession of child pornography be sentenced to four years in prison and be fined $10,000, they can also be labeled as a sex offender and be required to register for a period of time. One Michigan court ordered $200,000 in restitution for the possession of sexually explicit photos of an abused girl, so you can see that the penalties can be extreme.
Forensic Computer Examiners
The Michigan sex crime defense attorneys of Satawa Law will work hand-in-hand with highly skilled computer forensic experts to defend you against the charges of possession of child pornography. In almost all cases, the police seize the computer of the charged individual as well as external hard drives, flash drives and any other storage media, and later claim that child pornography was found on all devices. What many people are unaware of is that images and files which were downloaded—even inadvertently–then deleted can be recovered by trained computer examiners. Cases such as this can be won (or lost) by analyzing how the defendant’s computer and other storage devices were processed and examined. The attorneys at Satawa Law will go the extra mile to determine whether mistakes were made by the police crime lab in the analysis of data found on your computer. This extreme attention to detail could result in the charges against you being dropped.
We must, of course, protect our children from predators and abusive adults, however we also have a duty to protect the person who has merely viewed an image on their computer from excessively harsh sentencing. Prison sentences which can stretch into decades, hundreds of thousands of dollars in penalties and the loss of privacy and respect in their family and community are merely fueling the false belief that possession of such images further victimizes children. Our goal at Satawa Law is to enable you to return to your life without a permanent blot on your record, and without serving prison time or paying exorbitant fines. Don’t wait—call us today for the best defense, whether your charges are from the state of Michigan or Federal.
Michigan Penalties for Distribution of Child Pornography
You are facing extremely serious consequences for distribution of child pornography which range from jail time, a mandatory minimum prison sentence, being required to register as a sex offender, not to mention the loss of your privacy, the potential loss of respect in your community and family, and both short and long-term employment difficulties. You should be aware that the sex offender registry does not differentiate between levels of sex offenses, meaning you could be grouped with the very worst sex offenders, and have your photo and address splashed across the Internet for anyone to look up. With such high stakes, do you really want to trust your future to anything less than the most knowledgeable, highly qualified and skilled sex crime attorney?
Felony Penalties for Downloading
Michigan courts hand down severe felony penalties for merely downloading child pornography onto your computer, and federal penalties are even stiffer. One of the major problems with charges of this type is that there are many reasons you could have such images on your computer, even from a third-party hacker who has used a Trojan horse or other virus to download illegal images onto your computer. The criminal defense attorneys of Satawa Law are highly experienced, both in the state and federal arena, in the representation of those accused of distribution of child pornography, and if you have been charged with such a crime in the state of Michigan, you need aggressive representation.
In a case of distribution of child pornography, the burden of proof is squarely on the government, and the credibility of the forensic computer data. In other words, can the state or federal government prove who was sitting at your computer at the time the distribution took place? Perhaps you can prove you were somewhere else, or had no e-mail access to the account in question, giving you a much stronger defense. The attorneys at Satawa Law will work diligently and tirelessly to minimize the negative effects of such devastating charges on their client’s life. Should your case go to trial, we will present a compelling case in your defense, fighting hard to prove your innocence. We never, ever, accept a plea which is not absolutely in your best interests. While many Michigan attorneys are not familiar with defending federal charges of child pornography, our attorneys absolutely are. Our goal at Satawa Law is to allow you to put the incident behind you and move ahead with your life. Call us today for a consultation, and get your life back on track.
SPEAK WITH US & REQUEST A CONFIDENTIAL CONSULTATION
If you have been arrested or accused, our team of Southfield Child Pornography lawyers are ready to help defend your rights and protect your future. We understand the life-changing nature of these types of allegations. We never judge or assume; rather, we immediately start to try and determine the best way to win that case. We do that while providing our clients with the empathetic and compassionate guidance they need to get through this difficult time.
We have won the majority of the many cases we have defended at trial, and can use our extensive experience and expertise to help you as well. Do not wait for the police or prosecutors to make the first move. Speak with our Southfield defense team now, and allow us to put our knowledge, skill, and expertise to good use.
THE BEST DEFENSE STRATEGY IS AN AGGRESSIVE OFFENSE
Simply put, we are not afraid to take on prosecutors. We know that a relentless, effective, and well-thought out defense strategy will be critical to the success of a case. Because we always prepare every case extensively from the very beginning of our representation, we can offer persuasive rebuttals to any allegations brought by the Prosecution. We developed a multi-disciplinary approach, using a team of professionals to investigate and prepare our defense – experts, psychologists, lawyers, trial consultants, investigators, and jury consultants to prepare our client and our case for trial. We employ mock trials, practice direct and cross examinations, focus groups, client reenactments, and interview every possible witness to leave no trial stone unturned, and put the case in the best position to be won. When falsely accused of a crime, we demand that our clients to be treated fairly and equally by the justice system. We defend their rights, and protect their future.