Samuel Goldberg has been a Massachusetts criminal defense attorney for 20 years. Prior to that, he was a New York state prosecutor. He has published various articles regarding the practice of criminal law and frequently provides legal analysis on radio and television, appearing on outlets such as the Fox News Channel, Court TV, MSNBC and The BBC Network. To speak to Sam about a criminal matter call (617) 492 3000.

Malden Man Faces Child Pornography Charges

Anthony Gabriella, a 20-year-old Malden man, has been indicted by a Middlesex Grand Jury on charges of disseminating child pornography and two counts of possession of child pornography. He will be arraigned on December 13 in Middlesex Superior Court.

The Massachusetts Crimes Against Children Task force conducted an investigation in June into file-sharing programs for child pornography. The investigators, who included State Police detectives, connected to a host computer suspected of sharing child pornography files and obtained 200 files of what was apparently child pornography. A search warrant was executed at Gabriella’s home in July, during which a lap top and two thumb drives were seized from his bedroom. According to a statement from the DA’s office, police previewed the computer on the scene and found about 250 videos and images of child pornography. Gabriella was arrested at his home and arraigned on July 22 for charges of possession with intent to disseminate child pornography. He was released on bail with conditions that he refrain from using computers and the Internet, stop working at his lifeguard job and not have unsupervised contact with children.

Child pornography is the exception to the general rule that persons are free to possess obscene materials in the privacy of their home. Dissemination of child pornography carries a mandatory minimum 10-year prison sentence and could reach up to 20 years. Possession of child pornography carries a sentence of up to 5 years in state prison.

One of the elements of the dissemination charge is intent to disseminate the material. Without knowing more details of this case, this could be difficult for a prosecutor to prove in this instance because it involved a file-sharing. It’s not uncommon for file-sharing to be unintentional. For example, if you don’t choose a file-sharing password on Windows, you can unconsciously make your files accessible on the Internet and your hard-drive can become open to anyone who figures out your IP address. Depending on additional information, this is one possible argument that a criminal defense lawyer may make to combat this charge.

Source: The Boston Globe, Malden man indicted on child pornography charges

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