Virginia Child Pornography Investigations
According to the latest figures from the US Census Bureau’s Computer and Internet Use in the United States’ 2013 Survey, more Americans are connected to the Internet than ever before. Around 80 percent of all households have at least one connection, and over half of all of them have multiple users and modes of connection (PC, laptop, mobile device). But this flood of Internet usage also means that more child sexual predators use the online world as their primary source for victims in the United States and across the globe.
A large number of them are willing to travel great distances; online as well as physically, to induce young children as participants in the production and distribution of child pornography. In addition, these predators build sophisticated networks to commit their crimes, law enforcement and private organizations work just as closely to investigate and pursue child pornographers and others who abuse these helpless victims.
And though local and county law enforcement agencies throughout Virginia pursue individual offenders, they also work in-concert to bring members of these predator networks to justice. They include:
- The Virginia Department of Criminal Justice HT Unit – The DCJ investigates; supports local investigations, and prosecutes child pornography and human trafficking cases within the Commonwealth. In addition to its own computer crime unit, the DCJ also disperses state and federal grant money to local law enforcement and prosecutors that is used to fight child pornographers.
- The Northern Virginia/District of Columbia Internet Crimes against Children Task Force (ICAC) – This multi-jurisdictional body is composed of many municipal and county law enforcement agencies. It is one of 46 cooperative law enforcement organizations throughout the US that pool their resources in order to more effectively pursue and convict child porn offenders. In Virginia, it is a prominent beneficiary of DCJ grant funds.
- The Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section of the Department of Justice (CEOS) – It’s a division of the Criminal Division of the DOJ that enforces federal criminal statutes surrounding child exploitation and obscenity laws. It also assists all U.S. Attorney Offices with investigations, trials, and appeals that arise from these offenses. Prior to 2011, it was known as the Obscenity Prosecution Task Force (OPTF).
- The CEOS’ High Technology Investigative Unit (HTIU) – This portion of the DOJ is directly tasked with conducting computer forensic investigations and analysis of Internet technologies that are commonly used to distribute child pornography.
- The FBI’s Violent Crimes Against Children Program (VCAC) – A significant percentage of the bureau’s resources are devoted to its own investigations of child porn; and in support of other law enforcement efforts throughout the country. It works in conjunction with the DOJ’s CEOS and HTU divisions to pursue suspects who commit crimes against children. The FBI serves as a model for cutting edge technology and investigative methods of locating and identifying producers and distributors of child porn on a local, national and international basis.
- The U.S. Department of Homeland Security: Operation Predator – This agency collaborates with law enforcement agencies throughout the U.S. and the world to target all forms of child predation and pornography. It also coordinates efforts with the U.S. Customs and Immigration Services to identify child predators and pornographers who try to enter the U.S; or send their works to (and from) our shores.
- The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC) – is a private, non-profit organization established in 1984 by the Congress; as a reaction to public outrage over the growth of several well-publicized child abductions and murders in the early 1980’s. Primarily funded by the Justice Department, private contributions and grants, the NCMEC functions as an information clearinghouse and resource for parents, children, law enforcement agencies, schools, and communities in locating locate missing children; and raises public awareness about how to prevent abductions, sexual abuse and pornography of children. It also coordinates these efforts with local, state and federal law enforcement.
Hiring a Virginia Child Pornography Investigations Lawyer
If contacted concerning a child pornography case in Virginia, you may want to reach out for experienced legal representation. For a free consultation regarding the options in your specific case contact experienced Virginia criminal attorney Karin Riley Porter today.