Detention for Child Pornography Crimes
Law enforcement takes crimes related to child pornography very seriously and if you’re suspected of activities involving inappropriate materials that involve underage participates, you can expect to face severe punishment.
In many cases, those accused of crimes this serious at the federal level are not given the option of bond. Anyone charged with an offense involving a minor is presumed to be detained, which means that unless that person can provide sufficient evidence of not being a flight risk or danger to the community, there is little to no hope of being released until they are found not guilty in court.
What Happens When You are Arrested on Federal Criminal Charges?
Typically in a federal case, you appear in court no more than a few days of your arrest and the amount of bail is determined based on the recommendation of the Pretrial Service Officer to the judge. They base their recommendation on your criminal history and the nature of the crime for which you are accused, as well as information about your ties to the local community.
If you are determined to be a flight risk or a danger to the community the court can decide to hold you without bail.
The court can also require you be monitored via a GPS tracking device at all times and order you to take part in a mental health evaluation. Essentially, despite your release, you are still bound to a variety of obligations by the court. Working with an attorney can minimize the effects of your arrest and ensure your rights are not violated, but your situation is still serious.
How Do You Avoid Detention if You are Accused of a Child Pornography Crime?
One of the biggest challenges when a person is accused of a federal child pornography case is coordinating with his or her attorney. Prosecutors typically move for detention, which means you need an attorney familiar with the process and able to improve your odds of pre-trial release. Your freedom isn’t necessary to arrange an evaluation, gain access to mental health treatment, and meet with you to prepare a defense but it does make it easier.
Keep in mind, even if you are released, the federal court can impose a variety of conditions on your release, including:
- Surrender of your passports
- Restricting your ability to travel out of the jurisdiction
- Surrendering your firearms
- Abstaining from alcohol or drug use
- Imposing a curfew
- Avoiding certain areas or institutions
- Avoiding interaction with certain individuals
Federal cases can take months, and in some cases years to go to trial and during this time, you could be forced to live under any or all of the restrictions listed above. You could be monitored to ensure you comply with the restrictions set forth by the court and if you violate even one of them, you can be returned to federal custody without the right to post any bail.
Prosecutors are going to do all they can to keep you detained, but judges tend to be less eager to do so, especially if you have no criminal history. Some even believe prosecutors are being unreasonable asking that defendants not be released on bond, but this doesn’t mean they aren’t going to try.
Prosecutors are notorious for detaining without bond those charged with:
- Child pornography possession
- Child pornography distribution/promotion
- Child pornography receiving
- Possessing obscene material
- Online solicitation of a minor
How Can a Criminal Defense Attorney Help You?
If you’ve been charged with a federal child pornography crime, you need the support of an experienced criminal defense attorney. The more familiar a lawyer is with these types of cases the better.
Remaining in jail pre-trial reduces the odds you’ll eventually beat the charges against you. You’ll have fewer opportunities to work with your defense attorney and there might even be defense strategies you’ll be restricted from utilizing because of your detention. The most important thing you can do if you are arrested for any crime related to child pornography is to contact an experienced criminal defense attorney who can help you reduce the risks you face.
For more on how the court system handles bail, check out this information from Nolo.com.
For more information or to speak to someone about your situation or discuss the potential for being held on federal charges without bond, contact David Lindsey to schedule a free consultation.