Earlier this month, a 50 year old North Barrington man was arrested for possessing child pornography and disseminating it over the Internet. The Lake County Sheriff’s Office and the Lake County State’s Attorney Cybercrimes Division investigated James M. Parsino from mid-2014 until July 2015, who was later arrested and indicted on 5 counts of disseminating child pornography and 5 counts of possessing child pornography. Bond was set at $250,000. According to the Northwest Herald, “A forensic examination of electronics possessed by Parsono found an ‘extensive amount’ of child pornography [that] involved children younger that the age of 13.”
What Is The Definition of Child Pornography?
The State of Illinois defines child pornography as follows:
“A person commits child pornography who films, videotapes, photographs, or … depicts by computer [sexually explicit conduct by] any child whom he or she knows or reasonably should know to be under the age of 18, or any severely or profoundly intellectually disabled person…” (720 ILCS 5/11-20.1)
The statute also includes as felony criminal offenses the possession and dissemination of child pornography, so even if you have no part in creating it, the mere possession is a Class 2 Felony, while distributing it is a Class X Felony.
What Are The Penalties For Possessing or Disseminating Child Pornography?
Possessing child pornography is a Class 2 Felony that can result in 3 to 7 years in prison. Disseminating of child pornography is a Class X Felony that can result in 6 to 30 years in prison. Any person who is found guilty of these or any other sex offense is also required to register as a sex offender as required by the Illinois Sex Offender Registration Act (730 ILCS 150/1).
In actual practice however, sentences may be harsher or more lenient depending on the jurisdiction in which the crime was committed, the specific judge who tries your case, and current public opinion and attitude towards this type of offense. In recent years, there has been a leaning towards harsher sentences, tempered somewhat by those in the legal system who believe the penalties are too harsh. For this reason, it is always adviseable to retain an experienced lawyer who has handled such matters before.
Even though child pornography is generally considered to be one of the most serious and heinous acts that a person may commit, individuals who are accused of this crime are nonetheless entitled to a competent criminal defense. If you need a criminal defense lawyer on a charge of possessing child pornography, please contact Attorney David B. Franks.