Legal Question in Criminal Law in District of Columbia

Child Pornography Statute of Limitations

My close personal friend has been accused of illegally distributing, receiving child pornography on the internet. He admitted to the download, but no longer has any possession of these pics or his computer. How long is the federal statute of limitations for this charge at the federal level? He says he committed this crime over a year ago, so do the feds have a case against him? Is that statute of limitations up? I am actively telling him to rescind his confession or say it was done under duress. Can they convict him solely based on his confession?

Asked on 7/14/05, 6:49 pm

2 Answers from Attorneys

Michael E. Hendrickson Attorney & Counsellor at Law
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Re: Child Pornography Statute of Limitations

The statutes of limititation for federal as well as state felonies usually run around five years or so. If the "feds" charged your friend with a felony involving child pornography, you can be assured that they have a prosecutable case against him.

In addition to your friend's confession, the government undoubtedly has the collateral evidence which caused him to become a target of their investigation in the first place. This type of preliminary evidence is the evidence in the law which gives rise to what's called "probable cause" and allows government agents to secure the search warrant(s) which may be necessary to further the investigation and prosecution of the case.

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7/15/05, 11:07 am
Michael E. Hendrickson Attorney & Counsellor at Law
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Re: Child Pornography Statute of Limitations

Then, of course, there is also the evidence which the agents may have seized in the course of their executing the search warrant(s, or, perhaps, even the arrest warrant for your friend.

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7/15/05, 3:56 pm

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