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Child Pornography

Child Pornography Defense Attorneys in Greensboro

Keeping clients out of jail and off the sex offender registry

The Internet has made transmission of pornographic photos simple and seemingly anonymous. It also has made it easier to inadvertently access child pornography and for authorities to track down and prosecute suspected offenders.

At The Clifford Division of Clifford Clendenin & O'Hale, LLP, our criminal defense lawyers have been representing clients accused of sex crimes since 1973. We have remained on the cutting edge of these cases and have the technological savvy to defend even the most complex child porn cases.

Federal and state child pornography laws

Images of child pornography are not protected by the Constitution. It is illegal under state and federal law to produce, transport, share, receive or possess child pornography. While that sounds straightforward, the law is quite complex and involves numerous potential defenses. Each case is unique and requires diligent investigation by a qualified defense attorney.

Since most child pornography involves the Internet and technically crosses state lines, most cases are prosecuted under federal, not state, law, although it is possible to be charged under both. In either case, it is a felony. Federal penalties for child porn convictions are substantially harsher than for conviction under North Carolina law.

Penalties for child pornography and sexual exploitation

Under federal law, first-time offenders convicted of:

  • Producing child pornography face fines and a required minimum of 15 years to 30 years maximum in prison
  • Receipt, distribution or possession with the intent to distribute child pornography in interstate or foreign commerce face fines and a statutory minimum of five years to 20 years in prison
  • Possessing child pornography could be sentenced to up to 10 years in prison when victims are older than 12 or up to 20 years for younger victims

In contrast, under North Carolina law:

  • First-degree sexual exploitation of a minor (production of pornography) is a Class C felony carrying a sentence of 44 to 92 months for a first-time offender
  • Second-degree sexual exploitation of a minor (copying or distributing) is a Class E felony carrying a sentence of 15 to 31 months
  • Third-degree sexual exploitation of a minor (possession) is a Class H felony with a four- to eight-month sentence

Harsher penalties are handed down if the defendant has prior convictions or if the image involved violence or sexual abuse of the child.

Aside from prison and fines, conviction for child pornography comes with social stigma and lifetime registration as a sex offender.

You value your reputation. So do we.

Our attorneys handle these matters aggressively, swiftly and with discretion in order to protect your privacy, your family and your employment.

If you believe you are under investigation for child pornography, contact our lawyers right away.  We can immediately take steps to protect your rights, even before charges are filed. Of course, we also vigorously defend charges after they are filed.

Diligent, discreet Greensboro attorneys for pornography defense

The Clifford Division protects your rights and works to preserve your reputation and your future. Contact us at 336-574-2788 or online for a free consultation with an attorney you can trust.

Cases We Handle

We Handle:

  • Criminal cases in North Carolina District Court and Superior Court in Guilford County, including Greensboro and High Point
  • 50B and 50C protection order cases in both North Carolina District Courts in Guilford County, including Greensboro and High Point
  • Federal criminal cases
    • Misdemeanors in the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of North Carolina in Greensboro, Winston-Salem and sometimes Statesville and Durham
    • Felonies in all four cities and on a case-by-case basis in any federal court in the United States
  • Federal civil forfeiture cases, post-conviction work and investigations
    on an individual basis
  • Private prosecutions in state court on a case-by-case basis

Awards & Affiliations

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