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Child pornography and distribution crimes are universally disparaged, but many people accused of child pornography crimes have not engaged in the stereotypically heinous activities that come to mind. Society automatically brands individuals charged with these kinds of sex crimes, which can tarnish a professional reputation or personal identity for years to come, if not a lifetime. Without fast and experienced legal guidance, a child pornography accusation or charge can have devastating effects on an individual’s life. Our San Diego criminal defense lawyers know that facing charges of any kind involving abuse or exploitation of children can destroy more than the life of the accused.


Child pornography charges arise when law enforcement officers and investigators have reason to believe an individual possesses or intends to sell or distribute sexually explicit material featuring children under the age of 18. The list of material included under the law is exhaustive. Any visual content or verbal reference to visual content is eligible for use as evidence in child pornography cases. The sexually explicit materials do not have to show actual intercourse, however. Simulating the act is enough to constitute child pornography.

These types of crimes are considered felonies in the state of California. State charges may often coincide with federal charges and leave defendants facing years of imprisonment, registration as a sex offender, and steep fines.


Although being accused of the crime may feel devastating, being charged with child pornography possession or distribution is not the end of the rope. There are several legitimate defenses that can be used to help individuals fight pornography charges and get their lives back. Some of the most common strategies include:

  • Lack of knowledge of the existence of material. If you were not aware of the material, then you cannot be held responsible for it. For instance, if someone borrowed your computer and used it for illicit activities or if you accepted a data file or CD without knowing that it contained child pornography, the prosecution may not be able to prove beyond reasonable doubt that you had knowledge of the content.
  • Lack of knowledge of the age of participants. It is not illegal to view or distribute pornographic material online. If you had reason to believe the content you circulated featured legal adults, and it was reasonable to believe so, you may not be held liable for possessing or distributing the content.
  • Illegal seizure. In some cases, the way in which law enforcement obtained the material may not be admissible in court. Warrants based on false information or that were otherwise illegally obtained are not admissible in court based on Fourth Amendment rights.
  • Lack of intent to consume child pornography. We all accidentally click on sites we did not intend at some point or other. Most are innocuous mistakes, but accidentally clicking on a link to child pornography could lead to an investigation. Forensic analyses can typically uncover whether a site visit was a mistake based on the time spent on the site. If you do accidentally uncover child pornography, you can report it to the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children.

These are only some of the potential defenses that could be used to exonerate you from possession and distribution charges. At The Law Office of George Gedulin in San Diego, we understand that mistakes happen and that child pornography can be unknowingly possessed or distributed. If you are being charged with a child pornography crime, you will need a strong legal advocate to protect your rights and future.

Our team, led by founding San Diego Criminal Defense Attorney George Gedulin, will visit clients in jail or prison. We are committed to fighting aggressively for our clients’ rights from the moment they reach out for help. For more information about how we can help you fight a child pornography accusation, contact us today.

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