Houston Criminal Defense Attorney

Houston Child Pornography Lawyer

Defense for Sex Crimes in Houston, TX

Like any sex crime, child pornography possession, distribution, and production are extremely serious offenses that bring with them serious criminal penalties as well as a lifetime of collateral consequences. Pornography is defined as the use of sexually explicit material such as images and videos. When such sexual material involves one or more child, the acts are defined as involving child pornography.

If you or a loved one has been accused of such a crime, you cannot afford to wait to seek legal counsel. Your reputation and future are on the line from the moment law enforcement begins to investigate you.

At the Law Offices of Jed Silverman, we are prepared to protect your rights in these complex and highly stigmatized sex offense cases. Aggressive litigation and strategic negotiation allow us to pursue favorable results in these sensitive matters.

Penalties for Crimes Related to Child Pornography

Federal child pornography laws are serious crimes and convicted individuals face fines and severe statutory penalties. Persons found guilty as first-time offenders for producing child pornography can face serious fines and up to 30 years in prison. Offenders can be prosecuted under state, federal, or both jurisdictions for all types of child pornography offenses.

Additionally, offenders are required to register to the sex offender list. This will make the offender’s name, address, and all past offenses available to the public so that the offender can be monitored and tracked.

Texas Penal Code § 43.26: Possession or Promotion of Child Pornography

According to Texas Penal Code § 43.26, it is a crime to knowingly or intentionally possess or access with the intent to view material that depicts a child under the age of 18 engaging in sexual conduct. This may include any type of visual material, such as a photograph, videotape, slide, negative, film, disk, diskette or other mediums that allow such material to be viewed.

Felony of the Third Degree

Knowingly or intentionally possessing or attempting to access child pornography is a third-degree felony. It can be enhanced to a second-degree felony of the defendant has been convicted of this offense before, or enhanced to a first-degree felony if the defendant has been convicted of this offense two or more times in the past.

Felony of the Second Degree

Promoting child pornography or possessing for the attempt to promote child pornography is a felony of the second degree. This can be enhanced to a felony of the first-degree if the defendant has previously been convicted of this type of offense.

Texas Penal Code §43.251: Employment Harmful to Children

Just as possession and promotion of child pornography is unlawful, so also is employing, authorizing, or otherwise inducing a child to work in a sexually oriented commercial activity or in any place of business that permits or requires a child to work while nude or topless. An offense under this section is a felony of the second degree, and can be enhanced to a felony of the first-degree if the child involved is under the age of 14.

Texas Penal Code §43.25: Sexual Performance by a Child

Employing, authorizing, or inducing someone under the age of 18 to engage in sexual conduct or a sexual performance is against the law. This is a felony of the second degree that can be enhanced to a first-degree felony if the child was under the age of 14. Producing or directing a sexual performance involving a minor is a felony of the third degree, enhanced to a felony of the second degree if the minor is under the age of 14.

Texas Sex Offender Registration Requirements for Child Pornography Offenses

In Texas, anyone convicted of a “reportable conviction or adjudication” is required to register as a sex offender, following the requirements set forth in Chapter 62 of the Texas Code of Criminal Procedure[1]. Chapter 62.001(5) details which offenses are considered reportable convictions or adjudication. Those include child pornography-related offenses, such as:

  • 43.26 “Possession or Promotion of Child Pornography”
  • 43.25 “Sexual Performance by a Child”

In addition to registration, sex offenders will also be assigned a numeric risk level as determined by the sex offender screening tool. The three levels are Level One (low risk), Level Two (moderate risk), and Level Three (high risk). The length of sex offender registration[2] differs by type of offense. Violent offenses, such as 43.25 “sexual performance by a child,” requires lifetime registration. Possession or promotion of child pornography, while not categorized as violent, still warrant lifetime registration. Other offenses can warrant registration for ten years.

Accused of Child Pornography? Call (713) 597-2221 Today.

Child pornography offenses are varied and complex. These offenses also typically involve computers and the internet, adding a level of complexity that may require computer forensic experts to investigate and testify on the accused's behalf. It is of the utmost importance to retain experienced legal representation with our sex crime lawyers in Houston. We have the resources to thoroughly investigate child pornography charges and build compelling defense strategies for our clients.

Do not leave your future to chance. Contact a Houston child pornography attorney today.


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