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When a drawing or cartoon image can land you in jail

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Oct 2, It's Now Officially Illegal In California To Post Naked Photos Of Your Ex Holly Jacobs says she was a victim of revenge porn and sued her ex-boyfriend. The American Civil Liberties Union had opposed the bill, arguing it. Between consenting adults, the private sharing of nude or suggestive photos is generally not illegal. However, that does not mean that adults can freely engage . Oct 27, Some images are illegal even to see, an online crime scene. mangostock/ Shutterstock Clearly child pornography, more accurately called child abuse images, The US tried enacting similar legislation almost 20 years ago.

Sarah Bazaraa, a solicitor at Pannone Corporate, talks me through the civil legal issues that being involved in sexting could lead to.

While David Sonn, a criminal defence solicitor at Sonn Macmillan Walker, tells me about the possible criminal implications of sending explicit photos. It counts as an offence of distributing an indecent image of a child and is something you could receive a police caution for. You could even end up on the sex offenders register. Detective Sergeant Jan Rusdale of the Nottinghamshire force warns: When they come to getting a job this would then count against them.

illegal porn images found on Cumbrian man's computer | News and Star

That means that a year-old who can legally have sex cannot legally send a naked image. It's just as bad for a year-old as a year-old to sex.

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But, what's worse for a year-old is to send a photo showing them having sex. It's illegal for anyone below the age of 16 to have sex, so if the photo shows this, it could lead to them having doubly bad consequences.

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If a year-old sent a sext showing them having sex, they'd still be committing an offence by sending a naked image - but it wouldn't break the law around consent. The law covers still and moving images, and can include cartoons, drawings, and manga-style images.

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These images are easier to find on the internet than actual child abuse images involving real children, largely due to the fact that virtual pornography is not illegal in all countries. For example, the existence of Japanese websites featuring fantasy child sexual abuse has been a concern in countries where it is illegal. In other words, the rationale of the law was to address a possible risk of harm to children.

Certainly risk of harm has been regarded as sufficient elsewhere, for example in the age-based restriction of adult pornography, and indeed film classification in general.

But the focus here has always been on the producer and distributor of content rather than those possessing it. Strict possession offences are intrusive and often draconian in nature, and should only be used when justified by the prevention of credible harm.

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The problem with respect to this law governing cartoon child pornography is that it will in most cases be a victimless crime — the images are not of a real child suffering abuse. Instead the law focuses on the morality and character of the image — that which depicts a child, albeit an imaginary one, in an inappropriate context.

The difficult question is whether this offers sufficient justification to make possessing such an image a serious criminal offence when the possessor has no intent to harm a real child the production and distribution is a separate matter and raises more serious issues.

Criminalising conduct is generally justified on the basis of preventing harm to others after John Stuart Millhence why possessing real child abuse images would be a crime as they represent documentary evidence of real harm caused to children. But unless scientific evidence becomes available that establishes that possessing non-photographic images leads to physical offences, this is difficult to establish.