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Pennsylvania man says he accidently downloaded child pornography

The Pennsylvania State Police recently arrested two Fayette County men on charges of distributing child pornography over the Internet. In one of the cases, the defendant has said that he did not purposely download the images, but that they were delivered without his knowledge through online file-sharing software.

The other defendant, a 21-year-old Smithfield, Pennsylvania, man, is charged with one count of possession of child pornography and one count of child pornography dissemination. According to documents filed by prosecutors with the court, in May 2011 a Delaware County detective downloaded 12 images of child pornography from a computer authorities say belongs to the defendant.

The alleged download led to a search warrant on the defendant's computer. Investigators found at least 65 child pornography images on the computer, prosecutors claim.

In the other case, which is unrelated to the first one, a state trooper said he downloaded three child pornography images from a computer belonging to a 39-year-old Brownsville man in July 2010. According to authorities, when the trooper questioned the man about the images, he said that he had meant only to download regular pornography through a file-sharing program, but that sometimes other computers on the system uploaded child pornography on his computer.

State prosecutors in Pennsylvania are aggressive in their pursuit of child pornography convictions, and defenses involving computer software can be complex. An experienced criminal defense attorney can help those accused of possessing or distributing child pornography over the Internet sort out their legal options.

Source: Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, "2 Fayette County men face child porn charges," Liz Zemba, Jan. 24, 2012

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