Worried young girl with laptop sittingPossession of child pornography is a very serious crime in the United States. Those facing charges for federal possession of child pornography in South Florida are facing the prospect of serious prison time as well as the moral implications of being convicted of such a crime. The lifestyle and societal repercussions of Possesion of child pornography are unfortunately immense and can lead to you losing a job, or even your entire livelihood.If you or someone you know is being arrested, charged, or convicted of child pornography in Fort Lauderdale, the first thing you need to do is contact an experienced federal internet crimes attorney.

What is a Federal Possession of Child Pornography Crime?

The federal crime of possession of child pornography is depicted in statutory law as anyone who:

  • Knowingly possesses, transports or ships a visual depiction of child porn (a minor engaging in sexual conduct, or a minor depicted in a ‘sufficiently sexually suggestive’ way)
    • Visual depictions include photos, videos, digital renderings indistinguishable from an actual child (minor), undeveloped film or video, electronically stored data that can be converted into a visual image of child pornography

In simpler terms, the crime is pretty literal in name. If you are in possession of content which depicts a minor committing a sexual act, then you can be charged with child pornography.

The law also expands on the first amendment and how freedom of speech does not protect you from being charged with possession of child pornography.

It is also important to note that the concept of consent is irrelevant if the images are depictions of a child under the age of 18. The depiction is inherently illegal if the victim is under 18 years old, regardless of if the victim “consented.”

What distinguishes a state possession of child pornography crime from a federal child porn possession crime is:

  • Child porn possession or child-porn-related crime falls under federal jurisdiction (becomes a federal crime) if the child porn offense happened interstate (existed or was carried between states) or foreign commerce (exchange of goods, services, items of value).
    • This includes using the US mail system or mail carriers to transport child porn across state or international borders
    • Federal jurisdiction also almost always applies when the internet is used to commit a child porn crime. Even if the image itself wasn’t from another state or nation, federal law can still be implicated if you have images on your computer and you’ve traveled with that computer to other states or nations, for example.


The consequences of federal possession of child pornography vary on a few factors, such as whether or not you’ve had prior criminal convictions before facing these new federal child porn charges.

Convictions of federal child porn carry severe penalties – including up to life in prison.

First-offense federal child porn possession consequence:

  • A minimum of  5 years in prison up to a maximum of 20 years in prison
  • Fines are also likely
  • Harsher penalties are possible if the child porn materials are violent, masochistic, if they portray sexual abuse of a minor, and a few other factors.

Second-Offense federal child porn possession consequence:

  • A minimum of 15 years in prison up to a maximum of 40 years in prison
  • If convicted of a second-offense, or if the materials are especially graphic, a convicted federal child porn offender can face punishments of up to life in prison.

When it comes to a child pornography-related crime such as child porn possession, a defendant can always face additional prosecution by state law in addition to – or instead of – federal law prosecution.


If you or someone you know is facing charges of federal possession of child pornography in South Florida, the first thing you need to do is reach out to an experienced federal crimes lawyer. If you become aware that you’re under investigation for child porn or if police are trying to reach out to you, it’s best to hire a criminal attorney immediately. Do not agree to talk to the police without an attorney present.

The attorneys at Rossen Law Firm have had experience with federal child porn cases and we’re confident that we can help you get the best possible outcome on your case. We will fight our best and hardest, leaving no stone unturned.

We understand your future depends on us getting you the best possible result on your federal child porn case, and we do not take that lightly.

Federal Possession of Child Pornography Defense Strategies

  • Amount of pornographic material: If you possessed fewer than three images / matters of child porn, this can be used as an affirmative defense against your federal charge.
  • Tried to Destroy Materials: If you took reasonable steps to destroy each such visual depiction, this can be used as a defense
  • Reported the Materials: If you reported the matter to law enforcement and turned over all the images / material you came into contact with, this can be used to defend you against your charges.
  • Some other defenses include stating that you did not intentionally have the porn in your possession, that you accidentally had it in your possession, or that the child pornography in question was actually not child pornography (perhaps it was child erotica, for example).

Set Up a Free Federal Possession of Child Pornography Defense Strategy Session

We handle Federal Possession of Child Pornography cases of all types in Fort Lauderdale and across South Florida. We know how to protect your rights and provide you with a personalized and aggressive defense to your charges.

While penalties ranging from 5 years in prison, to 40 years in prison, to life in prison may seem daunting, we will fight to help you achieve a more favorable outcome.

We will also be able to help you better understand the possible outcomes of your case and the charges that you face. With a skilled attorney fighting for you, you don’t have to worry about any paperwork or coordinating appearances in court.

We offer FREE strategy sessions so you know how we’ll work to get the best possible result on your case for you. Give us a call to schedule your case today.


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