States Attorney On Child Porn Crimes

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Bond County has filed child pornography charges in recent years against those who have been using the Internet to view illegal images.

WGEL spoke with State’s Attorney Chris Bauer about the crime.

Bauer said viewing child pornography on the Internet is not a victimless crime.

“I think a lot of folks believe that when they’re in the safety of their own home they can view some images on the internet and, number one, escape being caught, and, number two, that they’re not hurting anybody; they’re just innocently participating, looking at things on the internet and that’s really not true,” he said.

Bauer said watchdog groups monitor online activity, so people are watching what you do on the internet.

He said the lives of the children in the images and videos have been turned upside down and the children deal with long-term problems because of being victimized.

Bauer also noted that by viewing such material, the viewer’s computer can be infected with viruses. He said those viruses can cause the affected computer, unbeknownst to its owner, to store or share information for other people.

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It is a crime to view child pornography and Bauer said disseminating the images carries a mandatory prison sentence.

The state’s attorney said there is now a network, spearheaded by the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children (NCMEC), which involves online service providers and works as an online reporting network.

When they see child pornography images being transported from one computer to another, online service providers contact the NCMEC, who contacts the attorney general, who, in turn, contact local authorities.

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