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Transmission of Child Pornography

Fewer crimes carry a heavier stigma than those related to child pornography. Even simple allegations of child pornography could devastate a person’s career, standing in the community and personal relationships. Often an offender charged with child pornography will face multiple counts if they participated in the transmission of child pornography.

When a person sends, delivers or gives another person pornographic material involving children on an electronic device it can result in transmission of child pornography charges. The penalties for the transmission of child pornography are just as severe or even moreso than possession of child pornography. Because of this, it’s highly encouraged you speak to an experienced criminal defense attorney for help.

Fort Lauderdale Lawyer for Transmission of Child Pornography in FL

If you have been arrested or believe you’re under investigation for the possession, transmission or manufacture of child pornography, then contact the attorneys at Meltzer & Bell. We have extensive experience with sex crimes including the sensitive area of child pornography charges. Let us guide you through the judiciary system so you can get your life back on track.

You can reach us at (754) 755-8554 to set up your first consultation free of charge. During your consultation, we will assess your charges and determine what the best defense strategy for you is. Meltzer & Bell represents people throughout the greater Broward County area including Hollywood, Pembroke Pines, Pompano Beach and Fort Lauderdale.

Overview of Child Pornography in FL


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How Does Florida Define Child Pornography?

Florida has a specific set of laws created to define child pornography. Under Florida Statutes Section 847.001(3), child pornography is any image depicting a minor engaged in sexual conduct. Florida defines a minor as any person under the age of 18 years old. “Sexual conduct” involves any of the following acts between two or more people.

  • Actual or simulated sexual intercourse;
  • Deviate sexual intercourse;
  • Masturbation;
  • Actual lewd exhibition of the genitals;
  • Any act or conduct which constitutes sexual battery or simulates that sexual battery is being or will be committed.
  • 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;
  • Sadomasochistic abuse; and
  • Sexual bestiality

A person can be arrested for being in possession, distributing, selling or producing child pornography. However, what many don’t understand is that you can be charged for simply sending child pornography to another person electronically.  This is known as the transmission of child pornography and can lead to serious consequences.

Under Florida Statutes Section 847.0137, it states it’s unlawful for any person to knowingly or intentionally transmit child pornography to another person or electronic software. The term “transmit” in Florida is any act of sending and causing to be delivered any image, information or data from one or more people or places to one or more people or places over or through any medium, which does include the internet, by use of an electronic device.


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Is Sexting Considered to be Child Pornography in Florida?

The act of “sexting” is a recent trend of sending sexually explicit photographs of yourself to another person. Normally the action is taken place between two people in an intimate relationship or who are about to partake in one. When this exchange happens between two adults no laws are violated. Sexting becomes a criminal violation when one of the parties is an minor and the other is over the age of 18.

If a minor takes a sexual photo of themselves naked and send it to another person over the age of 18, then it could be considered the transmission of child pornography. Adults who knowingly possess a “sext” message from a 16-year-old or younger could even be charged with sexual performance by a minor. Stating the “sexting” was consensual between both parties is not considered an admissible defense in Florida court.


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What Are the Penalties for Transmission of Child Pornography in FL?

The transmission of child pornography is an incredibly serious criminal charge that can uproot a person’s life. What makes the charge even more serious is the fact the court has the power to charge the offender with multiple counts of transmission of child pornography. That is because each separate message containing child pornography can be considered a different count.

Transmission of child pornography is a third-degree felony, which is punishable by:

  • Up to 5 years in prison; and
  • A possible fine of up to $5,000

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Additional Resources

Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE) | Child Pornography — Learn more about how the state of Florida defines child pornography and what to do if you receive or encounter it. You can also find links to organizations dedicated to fighting crimes against children and child safety tips.

Citizen’s Guide to United States Federal Child Pornography and Exploitation Laws — View information about federal child pornography laws on this section of the United States Department of Justice (DOJ) website. You can also learn more about the history of child pornography trafficking in the United States, victims of these crimes, and how the DOJ’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section (CEOS) works to eradicate the production, distribution, and possession of child pornography. The website also includes answers to frequently asked questions and ways to report violations.


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Transmission of Child Pornography Attorney in Fort Lauderdale, FL

Were you arrested or do you believe that you could be under investigation for transmission of child pornography in South Florida? No matter how confident you are in your innocence, you should not say anything to authorities until you have first contacted Meltzer & Bell.

Lawrence Meltzer and Steven Bell are experienced criminal defense lawyers in Fort Lauderdale who represents individuals in communities all over Broward County, including Hollywood, Tamarac, Weston, and Wilton Manors, Miramar, Pembroke Pines, Plantation, Pompano Beach, Sunrise, and many others.

You can have our attorneys review your case and answer all of your legal questions when you call (954) 745-7457 or complete an online contact form to schedule a free, confidential consultation.


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