Child erotica

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Child erotica, also known as pedophile paraphernalia, is non-pornographic material relating to children that is used by any individuals for sexual purposes.[1][2][3] It is a broader term than child pornography, incorporating material that may cause sexual arousal such as nonsexual images, books or magazines on children or pedophilia, toys, diaries, or clothes.[3][4] Law enforcement investigators have found that child erotica is often collected by pedophiles and child sexual abuse offenders. Child erotica may be collected as a form of compulsive behavior and as a substitute for illegal or difficult to obtain child pornography and is often a form of evidence for criminal behavior.[1] Some child erotica images are distributed over the internet and presented in a fashion similar to non-erotic child modeling.

Child modeling web sites[edit]

Erotic child modeling websites feature children modeling a variety of clothing types, including dresses, bikinis, nightgowns, or undergarments. Almost all internet child modeling centers around web sites that display model series or portfolios. The sites almost always present children as fashion models for hire. In fact, all of a model's income typically comes from membership subscriptions to the web sites displaying their photos. Subscription prices usually range from $20 to 30 per month. In 2002, the PJCrew site was reported to bring in a net income of US$ 7,000 to 10,000 a month at the time it was shut down. A Little Agency had an estimated 2,000 to 3,000 patrons who paid $22 monthly to view their photos.

Specific country issues[edit]

Legal issues in the United States[edit]

Depictions of even a clothed child violate U.S. federal law 18 U.S.C. § 2252(a)(2), 18 U.S.C. § 2252(a)(4), and 18 U.S.C. § 2256(2)(E) if they constitute "lascivious" exhibitions of the genitalia or pubic area.[5] The 10th Circuit Court of Appeals has defined "lascivious" as "tending to excite lust; lewd; indecent; obscene; sexual impurity; tending to deprave the morals in respect to sexual relations."

In the United States, some members of the Congress have proposed prohibiting certain child modeling sites. Some states are considering similar legislation.[6] Opponents of such legislation argue that it would probably be ruled to violate the first amendment to the US constitution.

Webe Web[edit]

In July 2001, Wired News published a story[7] about child modeling web sites that described Lil' Amber, which was a website operated by the web hosting company Webe Web Corporation located in Florida. Webe Web was, at the time, the oldest child modeling site service on the Internet. In November 2001, the NBC television station serving Miami, FL, ran a story entitled "Selling Innocence." A reporter "went undercover" to contact the site operators, and then tracked down Amber (a pseudonym), the model featured in Lil' Amber, at her family's farm in Palm Beach County. The news report prompted Florida Congressman Mark Foley (R-Palm Beach County) to propose legislation banning child modeling web sites.[8] Foley later resigned from office stemming from allegations of inappropriate conduct with a teenaged boy.[9]

Libman was first identified by the U.S. Postal Inspection Service (USPIS) and the FBI during an investigation of Webe Web Corp., a Florida-based company. According to court documents, USPIS and FBI agents seized large volumes of computer media during the execution of a search warrant at Libman’s residence in Fort Lauderdale. Many of the parents claimed to be unaware of the images being taken of their children, and some had signed over temporary legal custody of their child to Pierson during the modeling session.[10]

The owners were prosecuted in both Florida and Alabama. On November 28, 2006, criminal charges were laid against the owners of Webe Web Corporation. Immediately, all Webe Web child model sites went offline. Jeff Pierson pled guilty to charges of conspiracy and mailing, transporting or shipping child pornography,[10] while the owners of the web hosting company, Marc Evan Greenberg and Jeff Libman, pled not guilty.

Libman was indicted by a grand jury in the Southern District of Florida on April 28, 2009, for receiving, possessing and distributing child pornography. In his plea agreement, Libman admitted he received images that depict prepubescent children and children engaged in sadistic or masochistic conduct. On Nov. 13, 2009, Libman was sentenced to 7 years and 3 months in prison. He had faced a maximum possible term of 20 years in prison.[11][12]

Libman, Marc Evan Greenberg and Webe Web Corporation were indicted in November 2006 in a separate case in the Northern District of Alabama for conspiracy to produce images of child pornography and transportation of images of child pornography. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant Deputy Chief Alexandra R. Gelber and Trial Attorney Elizabeth M. Yusi of the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section (CEOS) and Assistant U.S. Attorney A. Marie Villafaña of the Southern District of Florida. The case is being investigated by USPIS, the FBI and CEOS’ High Tech Investigative Unit.[13][14][15]

A Little Agency[edit]

In early 2006 the operators of the child modeling agencies "A Little Agency" and "The VMS," (Matthew Duhamel) were arrested on charges of child pornography. Neither A Little Agency nor the VMS distributed nude photographs but federal prosecutors argued that they still contained "lascivious exhibitions" of the genitalia based on the six part Dost test.[16] Federal prosecutors claimed the Web sites dealt in images of girls as young as 9 wearing scant clothing in suggestive poses. One photo reportedly shows a 9-year-old girl in "black stiletto pumps, a black lace thong, black bra, and a black jacket" sitting on a dining room table, according to court records.[16] The operators were indicted on transportion of child pornography, possession of child pornography and receipt of child pornography.[16] Attorneys filed a motion to dismiss the charges against them arguing that the pictures of young girls in suggestive poses on the websites they operated did not rise to the level of pornography. However, the judge assigned to the case, Chief Judge Campbell, denied the motion to dismiss, noting that the U.S. Supreme Court has determined fully clothed pictures can be considered pornographic.[16]

Japan[edit]

The Japanese Law Banning Child Prostitution and Pornography, enacted in 1999, defines child pornography as any image of a child under 18 years old "naked or partially naked, which is sexually stimulating."

DVDs and photo books of scantily clothed Junior Idols are available for sale.

The Publishers Ethics Committee of the Japan Magazine Publishers' Association checks bookstores for inappropriate publications and has issued warnings to publishers of pornographic manga (books). However, committee members have said it is not easy to determine when an image crosses the line from art to child pornography.[17]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Lanning, Kenneth V. (2001). Child Molesters: A Behavioral Analysis 4th ed (pdf) 86. National Center for Missing and Exploited Children. p. 85-95. 
  2. ^ Lanning, Kenneth V.; National Center for Missing & Exploited Children (U.S.), Federal Bureau of Investigation (1992). Child sex rings: a behavioral analysis for criminal justice professionals handling cases of child sexual exploitation. National Center for Missing & Exploited Children. 
  3. ^ a b Zillmann, Dolf; Jennings Bryant (1989). Pornography: Research Advances and Policy Considerations. Routledge. pp. 239–241. ISBN 0-8058-0615-6. 
  4. ^ Strachan Peterson, Marilyn; Michael Durfee, Kevin Coulter (2003). Child Abuse and Neglect: Guidelines for Identification, Assessment, and Case Management. Volcano Press. p. 123. ISBN 1-884244-21-1. 
  5. ^ United States of America v. Knox, No. 92-7089, 3rd Circuit Court of Appeals
  6. ^ State Police Call for Tougher Internet Predator Laws
  7. ^ Scheeres, Julia (23 July 2001). "Girl Model Sites Crossing Line?". Wired. Retrieved 2007-09-14. 
  8. ^ "THOMAS Library of Congress". Retrieved 2007-09-14. 
  9. ^ "Rep. Foley Quits In Page Scandal". 
  10. ^ a b "Alabama Photographer Pleads Guilty to Child Pornography Charges". The America's Intelligence Wire. March 7, 2007. 
  11. ^ Vice President of Florida Corporation Pleads Guilty to 16 Counts of Transporting Child Pornography September 15, 2010
  12. ^ Florida Corporation Pleads Guilty to Transportation of Child Pornography and Conspiracy to Produce Child Pornography: President and Director of Corporation Pleads Guilty to Money Laundering April 22, 2010
  13. ^ "Florida Man Pleads Guilty to Receiving Child Pornography". Justice.gov. 2009-09-08. Retrieved 2011-12-28. 
  14. ^ Vice President of Florida Corporation Sentenced for Transporting Child Pornography 22 December 2010
  15. ^ Vice President of Florida Corporation Sentenced to 108 Months in Prison for Transporting Child Pornography December 17, 2010
  16. ^ a b c d Geoffrey Fatah (2006-08-03). "2 say photos of girls weren't porn: Their attorneys argue children 'fully clothed'". Deseret News. 
  17. ^ "Photos of preteen girls in thongs now big business | The Japan Times Online". Search.japantimes.co.jp. 2007-05-03. Retrieved 2011-12-28. 

Sources[edit]