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Child Pornography And Internet Luring Lawyer In Toronto

Mississauga, Brampton and Newmarket Child Pornography and Child Luring Lawyer

Commonly Asked Questions

1. What is child pornography?

2. What is the sentence for child pornography?

3. What is child luring?

4. What is the sentence for child luring?

5. What is child exploitation?

6. What is the sentence for child exploitation?

7. What is SOIRA?

8. What is a Section 161 Order?

9. What are my Charter rights?

10. Can the Charter help my defence?

11. Can I get assistance from Legal Aid Ontario for my case?

Charges involving child pornography and the internet luring of children have a potential to ruin lives. Most of these types of charges require the imposition of a minimum jail sentence. What this means is that the convicted person must be sentenced to at least a minimum prescribed period of time in jail and the jail sentence cannot be served in the community by way of house arrest. In addition, a conviction for such offences may have life-long consequences. You may be required to register as a sex offender, and you may be required to report all your movements regularly. Sex offender status can prevent you from getting a job and could block you from travelling outside Canadian borders. More information on the Sex Offender Information Registration Act (SOIRA), the National Sex Offender Registry and the Ontario Sex Offender Registry is available here.

Call Toronto Defence Lawyer Anthony De Marco for a Free Consultation

Contact my Toronto, Ontario, office today to discuss your child pornography or internet luring case. I offer a free 30-minute consultation. For your convenience, I offer reasonable payment plans. I also accept Legal Aid in most cases. You can reach me by phone at 416-651-2299 or toll free 1-888-399-3164 or by e-mail.

What is Child Pornography?

Child Pornography is defined in Section 163.1 of the Criminal Code of Canada as follows:

Section 163.1 (1)

In this section, "child pornography" means

(a) a photographic, film, video or other visual representation, whether or not it was made by electronic or mechanical means,

  1. that shows a person who is or is depicted as being under the age of eighteen years and is engaged in or is depicted as engaged in explicit sexual activity, or
  2. the dominant characteristic of which is the depiction, for a sexual purpose, of a sexual organ or the anal region of a person under the age of eighteen years;

(b) any written material, visual representation or audio recording that advocates or counsels sexual activity with a person under the age of eighteen years that would be an offence under this Act;

(c) any written material whose dominant characteristic is the description, for a sexual purpose, of sexual activity with a person under the age of eighteen years that would be an offence under this Act; or

(d) any audio recording that has as its dominant characteristic the description, presentation or representation, for a sexual purpose, of sexual activity with a person under the age of eighteen years that would be an offence under this Act.

What is the Sentence for Child Pornography?

The Criminal Code of Canada sets out the following offences and penalties:

Section 163.1 (2) - Making Child Pornography

Every person who makes, prints, publishes or possesses for the purpose of publication any child pornography is guilty of an indictable offence and liable to imprisonment for a term of not more than 14 years and to a minimum punishment of imprisonment for a term of one year.

Section 163.1(3) - Making Child Pornography Available

Every person who transmits, makes available, distributes, sells, advertises, imports, exports, or possesses for the purpose of transmission, making available, distribution, sale, advertising or exportation any child pornography is guilty of an indictable offence and liable to imprisonment for a term of not more than 14 years and to a minimum punishment of imprisonment for a term of one year.

Section 163.1(4) - Possession of Child Pornography

Every person who possesses any child pornography is guilty of

(a) an indictable offence and is liable to imprisonment for a term of not more than 10 years and to a minimum punishment of imprisonment for a term of one year; or

(b) an offence punishable on summary conviction and is liable to imprisonment for a term of not more than two years less a day and to a minimum punishment of imprisonment for a term of 6 months.

Section 163.1(4.1) - Accessing Child Pornography

Every person who accesses any child pornography is guilty of

(a) an indictable offence and is liable to imprisonment for a term of not more than 10 years and to a minimum punishment of imprisonment for a period of one year; or

(b) an offence punishable on summary conviction and is liable to imprisonment for a term of not more than two years less a day and to a minimum punishment of imprisonment for a term of 6 months.

The Criminal Code of Canada specifies that a person accesses child pornography who knowingly causes child pornography to be viewed by, or transmitted to, himself or herself.

What is Child Luring?

The offence of luring a child for a sexual purpose is committed when an accused, by means of telecommunication, communicates with

(a) a person who is, or who the accused believes is, under the age of 18 years, for the purpose of facilitating the commission of certain designated offences with respect to that person (such as a child pornography offence) or

(b) a person who is, or who the accused believes is, under the age of 16 years, for the purpose of facilitating the commission of certain designated offences with respect to that person (such as sexual interference , invitation to sexual touching and sexual assault) or

(c) a person who is, or who the accused believes is, under the age of 14 years, for the purpose of facilitating the commission of child abduction.

What is the Sentence for Child Luring?


The penalties for child luring are as follows:

(a) a maximum term of imprisonment of not more than 14 years and a minimum term of imprisonment of one year if the Crown proceeds by indictment;

(b) a maximum term of imprisonment of not more than two years less a day and a maximum term of imprisonment of 6 months if the Crown proceeds summarily.

Beyond that, the stigma that attaches to those accused of child pornography and the luring of children over the internet can forever change the way others view you. For all of these reasons, it is critical that you have a skilled and knowledgeable defence lawyer on your side. I have more than 35 years of experience defending against the most serious charges. I believe strongly that everyone deserves a defence, and I will work hard to build the strongest possible defence on your behalf.

I am qualified to defend you against even the most serious charges, including:

  • Making child pornography
  • Transmitting, making available, distributing or otherwise dealing with child pornography
  • Possession of child pornography
  • Accessing child pornography
  • Transmitting, making available, distributing or selling sexually explicit material to a child
  • Luring or communicating with a child over the internet for the purpose of facilitating the commission of a sexual offence
  • Using a computer to agree or arrange with another person to commit a sexual offence against a child

What is the Sex Offender Registry?

Anyone convicted of a sexual offence will be subject to a mandatory order to comply with the Sex Offender Information Registration Act (SOIRA), which will result in his or her name and other personal information being placed in the Ontario National Sex Offender Registry. In addition the convicted person will be required to have his or her name placed on the Ontario Sex Offender Registry. This can seriously affect your ability to obtain employment and the quality of your life. This is another important reason to make sure you are represented by only a qualified and skilled criminal defence lawyer. More Information on the Sex Offender Information Registration Act (SOIRA), the National Sex Offender Registry and the Ontario Sex Offender Registry is available here.

What is a Prohibition Order Pursuant to Section 161 of the Criminal Code of Canada?

A person who is found guilty of committing a sexual offence, a child pornography offence or an offence involving the Internet luring of a person who is under the age of 16 years also faces the possibility that the court may make an order prohibiting the offender from engaging in activity that may bring the offender in contact with persons under the age of 16 years. This prohibition order is discretionary. The prohibition order may be for life or any shorter period that the court considers desirable. The court may also make the prohibition order subject to conditions or exemptions that the court considers appropriate.

The prohibition order may prohibit the offender from doing any or all of the following:

  • attending a public park or public swimming area where persons under the age of 16 years are present or can reasonably be expected to be present, or a day care centre, school ground, playground or community centre;
  • seeking, obtaining or continuing any employment, whether or not the employment is remunerated, or becoming or being a volunteer in a capacity that involves being in a position of trust or authority toward persons under the age of 16 years;
  • having any contact - including communicating by any means - with a person who is under the age of 16 years, unless the offender does so under the supervision of a person whom the court considers appropriate; or
  • using the Internet or other digital network unless the offender does so in accordance with conditions set by the court.

When Can a Court Make an Order for Forfeiture of Property?

A court that convicts a person of child pornography, the Internet luring of a minor or the offence of agreeing or arranging with another person, by means of telecommunication, to commit child pornography, or a sexual offence against a minor, may order the forfeiture of the property of the offender, or the property of any party to the offence, even if the property is in the possession of a third party if it can reasonably be inferred that the property was transferred for the purpose of avoiding forfeiture.

An Intelligent Approach to Protect Your Rights

In creating a strong defence in child pornography and internet luring cases, pre-trial investigation and a knowledge of computer-related offences is key.

I take the time to find any weaknesses in the Crown's case. For example, if you believe that you took reasonable steps to ascertain the age of the person involved to ensure that that person was not within the restricted age, I will present the strongest possible argument to establish that you are not guilty.

In other cases, the subject material may have a legitimate purpose related to the administration of justice or to science, medicine, education or art and may not pose an undue risk of harm to persons under the age of 18 years thereby preventing your conviction. I will also investigate whether the material in question is actually child pornography and if the child involved in fact qualifies as a child according to the relevant legislation.

You can rely on me to construct a serious defence against these serious allegations.

DNA and Other Forensic Evidence

Forensic evidence, such as DNA evidence, is just one type of evidence that the Crown can try to introduce against a person accused of a crime. The defence can challenge the admissibility of forensic evidence on the basis of relevance, prejudice or that there is a lack of a sufficient scientific foundation to make the evidence reliable and worthy of being admitted, in other words, the forensic evidence is inadmissible because it is based on "junk science".

Over the years, there have been several types of forensic evidence that have been rejected by the courts in the United States and, to a lesser extent, Canada, including voice print identification, comparative bullet lead analysis and several indicators of arson dependent on visual cues.

Likewise, there are various other types of forensic evidence which are possibly unreliable, such as microscopic hair comparison, and "pattern comparison" evidence such as bite marks, tire marks and handwriting.

Even in cases where the forensic evidence is ruled admissible, the defence can still try to weaken the impact of the evidence by arguing, for example, that the results of the forensic testing were the subject of "motivated perception". In other words, the scientist who did the testing interpreted the results so as to support his or her expectations or the expectations of the police or Crown prosecutors. The defence can argue, or call evidence to show, that the forensic examiner should have first tested the evidence blindly without knowing anything about the case in order to avoid a subconscious bias. Studies have shown that even the opinion of fingerprint analysts can be affected by the analysts' preconceived notions about the case. Also, there is always a risk of a false positive. Moreover, if the laboratory that completed the testing, such as the Centre of Forensic Sciences, is known to have made errors on occasion in the past, the defence can argue that the error rates should also be entered in evidence.

In appropriate cases, and where funds permit, the evidence can be re-tested by an independent laboratory for verification.

A good defence lawyer should know the weaknesses of specific scientific techniques or seek out an appropriate defence consulting expert to learn about and present evidence regarding those weaknesses.

Pre-Trial Charter Applications

Often, the best defence to a criminal charge involves a challenge to the investigation that resulted in the arrest of the accused or the collection of evidence against the accused. The police are not allowed to breach the rights that are guaranteed to the accused by the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

I will investigate any possible Charter breaches by carefully reviewing the Crown disclosure documents, including the documents used by the police to obtain search warrants for the home, car or other property of the accused, and the documents used by the police to obtain production orders, such as for cell phone records and wiretap authorizations.

If I detect any violation of the Charter rights of the accused or violation of acceptable investigative procedures established by the courts, I will proceed with an application asking for the exclusion of evidence from the trial of the accused obtained illegally by the police, including the statements of the accused and other evidence seized during the investigation.

I have an established reputation for success in pre-trial applications. Winning a Charter application will result in the exclusion of evidence if the court determines that not excluding the evidence will bring the administration of justice into disrepute. The exclusion of evidence often results in a finding of not guilty if the Crown's remaining evidence is insufficient to prove that the accused committed the offence beyond a reasonable doubt.

I have the necessary experience, research skills, writing skills, and advocacy skills to prepare and effectively argue pre-trial Charter applications. The value of legal writing skills cannot be overstated since proceeding with pre-trial Charter applications will require the preparation of several documents including a Notice of Application, an Affidavit, and a Factum setting out the relevant facts and summarizing the relevant case law.

Electing to Have a Preliminary Inquiry

In cases in which a Defendant is exposed to a possible period of 14 years in jail or more, the Defendant will have the right to proceed with a preliminary inquiry in the Ontario Court of Justice and then a trial in the Superior Court of Justice before a court composed of a Judge sitting with a jury or without a jury. In the past, this level of court was referred to as "High Court".

The completion of a preliminary inquiry is not mandatory. The Defendant has the right to waive the preliminary inquiry and to proceed directly to trial in either the Ontario Court of Justice or the Superior Court of Justice. If the trial is to be completed in the Superior Court of Justice, the waiver of the preliminary inquiry will require the consent of the Crown.

At a preliminary inquiry, the Crown is required to call some evidence upon which a properly instructed jury, acting reasonably, may return a verdict of guilt. This is an easy test for the Crown to meet in the vast majority of cases. Accordingly, it is relatively rare for someone who proceeds with a preliminary inquiry to be discharged with respect to all of the charges which he or she is facing. The real value in having a preliminary inquiry is not in the hope of being entirely discharged, thereby bringing the entire criminal proceedings to an end, but in being able to better prepare the case for trial. The defence lawyer will have an opportunity to cross-examine and test the evidence of the primary Crown witnesses. An experienced and skilled defence lawyer can discover the strengths and weaknesses of the Crown witnesses and commence building an effective defence strategy. A preliminary inquiry is especially valuable for the defence in cases involving young, infirm, unreliable or unsavory Crown witnesses.

Call Toronto Defence Lawyer Anthony De Marco for a Free Consultation

Contact my Toronto, Ontario, office today to discuss your child pornography or internet luring case. I offer a free 30-minute consultation. For your convenience, I offer reasonable payment plans. I also accept Legal Aid in most cases. You can reach me by phone at 416-651-2299 or toll free 1-888-399-3164 or by e-mail.

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