Houston Criminal Law Blog

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“Dreamboard” Child Pornography Ring Busted by Feds

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/08/04/us/04porn.html?_r=1&ref=us

Yesterday, Attorney General Eric Holder announced that 72 people have been indicted for distributing child pornography through the online website “Dreamboard.”  At least 50 of these individuals have been arrested, and the remaining 22 indictments are still sealed.  If convicted, these people face lengthy prison sentences.  In Texas, to prove that a person possessed something illegal (such as drugs or child pornography), the government must prove that the person voluntarily and knowingly obtained or received illegal contraband, or that the person was aware of his control of the illegal contraband for enough time to get rid of it.  The person must exercise care, custody, and control over the illegal item.  A person is not guilty of possession when they are merely present in an area where contraband is found.  In order for the government to prove that a person is guilty of possession, they must “affirmatively link” the person to the illegal item.  This can be done in various ways such as fingerprint evidence, eyewitness testimony, etc.

When a person is charged not only with possessing something illegal, but also with manufacturing or distributing it, the penalties increase dramatically.  This is true in both Federal and State Courts.  If you or a loved one is charged with possession of child pornography, it is important for you to hire competent counsel.  Call the Law Office of The Law Office of Matthew D. Sharp today for a free consultation.

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