N.Y. Legislation Follows Ruling on Viewing Child Porn

May 14, 2012 11:30 AM PST

ALBANY, N.Y. —  The New York state Legislature has two new identical bills dealing with child pornography.

The introduction of the two bills, introduced in the Senate and Assembly, comes after last week's state Court of Appeals decision that said viewing child porn online doesn't constitute either criminal possession or procurement under state penal law.

The appeals court dismissed two of several counts against a former professor after a virus scan in 2007 found 132 pornographic images. He was convicted and sentenced to one to three years in prison.

In the decision, Judge J. Graffeo said  that the "result of the majority's analysis is that the purposeful viewing of child pornography on the Internet is now legal in New York."

The identical bills would make it a state crime to simply view child pornography.

That would include streaming video, storing images in a cloud and other means that don't require downloading or saving pornography to a computer, as the current law does.

Tim Henning, ASACP's executive director, last week told XBIZ that the appeals court decision was "disappointing" and that those who "abuse children need to be successfully prosecuted."

But Henning today said the latest legislative attempt is "a very quick action."

"ASACP supports initiatives that protect children and I applaud their quick attention and action," Henning told XBIZ. "I do hope, however, that these bills take a balanced approach to protect innocent people that view child pornography accidentally and take action to report suspected child pornography to hotlines and authorities.

"These people do need protection from wrongful prosecution while those that abuse children need to be successfully prosecuted. Global society has a duty to protect those who are incapable of protecting themselves and children are among societies most vulnerable citizens."


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