High Tech Porn Can Mean High Tech Trouble

Law enforcement and prosecutors hear this defense all the time: “it wasn’t me.”  If you went and visited a state prison, you would probably hear a lot of people behind bars say “it wasn’t me.”  Let’s face it: a lot of people will not own up to a crime that they have committed.  Thus, when you hear someone say “it wasn’t me,” your natural assumption is that the person is lying.  However, according an article by Debra Cassens Weiss, a senior writer with the ABA Journal, when it comes to illegal internet pornography, we may need to rethink our assumptions.
Cassens discusses an issue that I have been hearing from experts for the past couple of years.   In her article entitled “Viruses Can Infect Computers with Child Porn, Leading to Legal Charges,” she discusses the growing number of cases when another person hijacks your computer to view or store child pornography.  Cassen’s article states:

Viruses can infect your computer, allowing pedophiles to view child porn when your PC is online or to use your computer to surf child porn sites….An infected computer may be the least of your problems, the Associated Press reports. “An Associated Press investigation found cases in which innocent people have been branded as pedophiles after their co-workers or loved ones stumbled upon child porn placed on a PC through a virus,” the story says. “It can cost victims hundreds of thousands of dollars to prove their innocence.”

AP cites the case of Michael Fiola, a former investigator with the Massachusetts agency that oversees workers’ compensation. An Internet bill for his state-issued laptop showed he was using more than four times the online data of his colleagues. An investigation found child porn stored in a folder that contains images viewed online…Fiola was fired and charged with possession of child pornography. He spent $250,000 on legal fees before prosecutors dropped charges. An inspection of the laptop had found it was programmed to visit as many as 40 child porn sites per minute.’

Consequently, the next time someone says “it wasn’t me,” maybe we need to run a virus check before we assume they are lying.
If you need legal advice for a specific problem, you must consult with an Arizona Criminal Defense Attorney. For more information about Arizona Criminal Law or a specific legal problem, please contact the Koplow Law Firm Online or by phone at (602) 494-3444.

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