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Internet Pornography

There has been a huge increase in the number of internet
related investigations and prosecutions on the Treasure
Coast involving allegations of computer pornography, and the exploitation of minors.  One of the contributing factors is the rise in "watchdog" groups and organizations such as Perverted Justice.  Another contributing factor is Law Enforcement's political need to not be outdone by shows such as MSNBC's To Catch a Predator, and to appear vigilant in the public's eye. 

For years now, law enforcement agencies in Martin County, St. Lucie County, and Indian River County, have increased the size of their units concentrating on internet pornography investigations, and many are employed solely  for the purpose of catching sexual predators on the internet.

For  your convenience various Florida Statutes have been included herein for your review:

Source:
Online Sunshine - Official Internet Site of the Florida Legislature

847.0135 - COMPUTER PORNOGRAPHY; TRAVELING TO MEET MINOR; PENALTIES

(1)  SHORT TITLE
This section shall be known and may be cited as the "Computer Pornography and Child Exploitation Prevention Act."

(2)  COMPUTER PORNOGRAPHY
A person who:

(a)  Knowingly compiles, enters into, or transmits by use of computer;

(b)  Makes, prints, publishes, or reproduces by other computerized means;

(c)  Knowingly causes or allows to be entered into or transmitted by use of computer; or

(d)  Buys, sells, receives, exchanges, or disseminates,

any notice, statement, or advertisement of any minor's name, telephone number, place of residence, physical characteristics, or other descriptive or identifying information for purposes of facilitating, encouraging, offering, or soliciting sexual conduct of or with any minor, or the visual depiction of such conduct, commits a felony of the third degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084. The fact that an undercover operative or law enforcement officer was involved in the detection and investigation of an offense under this section shall not constitute a defense to a prosecution under this section.

(3)  CERTAIN USES OF COMPUTER SERVICES OR DEVICES PROHIBITED
Any person who knowingly uses a computer online service, Internet service, local bulletin board service, or any other device capable of electronic data storage or transmission to:

(a)  Seduce, solicit, lure, or entice, or attempt to seduce, solicit, lure, or entice, a child or another person believed by the person to be a child, to commit any illegal act described in chapter 794, chapter 800, or chapter 827, or to otherwise engage in any unlawful sexual conduct with a child or with another person believed by the person to be a child; or

(b)  Solicit, lure, or entice, or attempt to solicit, lure, or entice a parent, legal guardian, or custodian of a child or a person believed to be a parent, legal guardian, or custodian of a child to consent to the participation of such child in any act described in chapter 794, chapter 800, or chapter 827, or to otherwise engage in any sexual conduct,

commits a felony of the third degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084. Any person who, in violating this subsection, misrepresents his or her age, commits a felony of the second degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084. Each separate use of a computer online service, Internet service, local bulletin board service, or any other device capable of electronic data storage or transmission wherein an offense described in this section is committed may be charged as a separate offense.

(4)  TRAVELING TO MEET A MINOR
Any person who travels any distance either within this state, to this state, or from this state by any means, who attempts to do so, or who causes another to do so or to attempt to do so for the purpose of engaging in any illegal act described in chapter 794, chapter 800, or chapter 827, or to otherwise engage in other unlawful sexual conduct with a child or with another person believed by the person to be a child after using a computer online service, Internet service, local bulletin board service, or any other device capable of electronic data storage or transmission to:

(a)  Seduce, solicit, lure, or entice or attempt to seduce, solicit, lure, or entice a child or another person believed by the person to be a child, to engage in any illegal act described in chapter 794, chapter 800, or chapter 827, or to otherwise engage in other unlawful sexual conduct with a child; or

(b)  Solicit, lure, or entice or attempt to solicit, lure, or entice a parent, legal guardian, or custodian of a child or a person believed to be a parent, legal guardian, or custodian of a child to consent to the participation of such child in any act described in chapter 794, chapter 800, or chapter 827, or to otherwise engage in any sexual conduct,

commits a felony of the second degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084.

(5)  OWNERS OR OPERATORS OF COMPUTER SERVICES LIABLE
It is unlawful for any owner or operator of a computer online service, Internet service, or local bulletin board service knowingly to permit a subscriber to use the service to commit a violation of this section. Any person who violates this section commits a misdemeanor of the first degree, punishable by a fine not exceeding $2,000.

(6)  STATE CRIMINAL JURISDICTION
A person is subject to prosecution in this state pursuant to chapter 910 for any conduct proscribed by this section which the person engages in, while either within or outside this state, if by such conduct the person commits a violation of this section involving a child residing in this state, a child's guardian, or another person believed by the person to be a child or a child's guardian residing in this state.

(7)  EFFECT OF PROSECUTION
Prosecution of any person for an offense under this section shall not prohibit prosecution of that person in this state or another jurisdiction for a violation of any law of this state, including a law providing for greater penalties than prescribed in this section or any other crime punishing the sexual performance or the sexual exploitation of children.

847.0137  - TRANSMISSION OF PORNOGRAPHY BY ELECTRONIC DEVICE OR EQUIPMENT PROHIBITED; PENALTIES

(1)  For purposes of this section:

(a)  "Minor" means any person less than 18 years of age.

(b)  "Transmit" means the act of sending and causing to be delivered any image, information, or data from one or more persons or places to one or more other persons or places over or through any medium, including the Internet, by use of any electronic equipment or device.

(2)  Notwithstanding ss. 847.012 and 847.0133, any person in this state who knew or reasonably should have known that he or she was transmitting child pornography, as defined in s. 847.001, to another person in this state or in another jurisdiction commits a felony of the third degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084.

(3)  Notwithstanding ss. 847.012 and 847.0133, any person in any jurisdiction other than this state who knew or reasonably should have known that he or she was transmitting child pornography, as defined in s. 847.001, to any person in this state commits a felony of the third degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084.

(4)  This section shall not be construed to prohibit prosecution of a person in this state or another jurisdiction for a violation of any law of this state, including a law providing for greater penalties than prescribed in this section, for the transmission of child pornography, as defined in s. 847.001, to any person in this state.

(5)  A person is subject to prosecution in this state pursuant to chapter 910 for any act or conduct proscribed by this section, including a person in a jurisdiction other than this state, if the act or conduct violates subsection (3).

The provisions of this section do not apply to subscription-based transmissions such as list servers.

847.0138 - TRANSMISSION OF MATERIAL HARMFUL TO MINORS TO A MINOR BY ELECTRONIC DEVICE OR EQUIPMENT PROHIBITED; PENALTIES

(1)  For purposes of this section:

(a)  "Known by the defendant to be a minor" means that the defendant had actual knowledge or believed that the recipient of the communication was a minor.

(b)  "Transmit" means to send to a specific individual known by the defendant to be a minor via electronic mail.

(2)  Notwithstanding ss. 847.012 and 847.0133, any person in this state who knew or believed that he or she was transmitting an image, information, or data that is harmful to minors, as defined in s. 847.001, to a specific individual known by the defendant to be a minor in this state commits a felony of the third degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084.

(3)  Notwithstanding ss. 847.012 and 847.0133, any person in any jurisdiction other than this state who knew or believed that he or she was transmitting an image, information, or data that is harmful to minors, as defined in s. 847.001, to a specific individual known by the defendant to be a minor in this state commits a felony of the third degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084.

The provisions of this section do not apply to subscription-based transmissions such as list servers.

775.0847 - POSSESSION OR PROMOTION OF CERTAIN IMAGES OF CHILD PORNOGRAPHY; RECLASSIFICATION

(1)  For purposes of this section:

(a)  "Child" means any person, whose identity is known or unknown, less than 18 years of age.

(b)  "Child pornography" means any image depicting a minor engaged in sexual conduct.

(c)  "Sadomasochistic abuse" means flagellation or torture by or upon a person or the condition of being fettered, bound, or otherwise physically restrained, for the purpose of deriving sexual satisfaction, or satisfaction brought about as a result of sadistic violence, from inflicting harm on another or receiving such harm oneself.

(d)  "Sexual battery" means oral, anal, or vaginal penetration by, or union with, the sexual organ of another or the anal or vaginal penetration of another by any other object; however, sexual battery does not include an act done for a bona fide medical purpose.

(e)  "Sexual bestiality" means any sexual act, actual or simulated, between a person and an animal involving the sex organ of the one and the mouth, anus, or vagina of the other.

(f)  "Sexual conduct" means actual or simulated sexual intercourse, deviate sexual intercourse, sexual bestiality, masturbation, or sadomasochistic abuse; actual lewd exhibition of the genitals; actual physical contact with a person's clothed or unclothed genitals, pubic area, buttocks, or, if such person is a female, breast with the intent to arouse or gratify the sexual desire of either party; or any act or conduct which constitutes sexual battery or simulates that sexual battery is being or will be committed. A mother's breastfeeding of her baby does not under any circumstance constitute "sexual conduct."

(2)  A violation of s. 827.071, s. 847.0135, s. 847.0137, or s. 847.0138 shall be reclassified to the next higher degree as provided in subsection (3) if:

(a)  The offender possesses 10 or more images of any form of child pornography regardless of content; and

(b)  The content of at least one image contains one or more of the following:

1.  A child who is younger than the age of 5.

2.  Sadomasochistic abuse involving a child.

3.  Sexual battery involving a child.

4.  Sexual bestiality involving a child.

5.  Any movie involving a child, regardless of length and regardless of whether the movie contains sound.

(3)(a)  In the case of a felony of the third degree, the offense is reclassified to a felony of the second degree.

(b)  In the case of a felony of the second degree, the offense is reclassified to a felony of the first degree.

For purposes of sentencing under chapter 921 and determining incentive gain-time eligibility under chapter 944, a felony offense that is reclassified under this section is ranked one level above the ranking under s. 921.0022 or s. 921.0023 of the offense committed.

Call (772) 220-4400 to schedule your free and confidentialconsultation today.

David Golden P.A. - Stuart Criminal Defense Attorney
Located at 903 SE Central Pkwy Stuart, FL 34994. View Map
Phone: (772) 220-4400
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