Are you looking for information about California Penal Code Section 311.4: Employment of Minor in Sale or Distribution of Obscene Matter or Production of Pornography? Our team at the Simmrin Law Group can answer your legal questions about this charge.
Reach out to us for more information about PC 311.4 charges. We can review the actions that lead to this charge, penalties for a conviction, and possible legal defenses during a free consultation.
What Charges Does PC 311.4 Cover?
California Penal Code Section 311.4 deals with the employment of a minor in the sale or distribution of obscene matter or the production of pornography. Therefore, PC 311.4 represents one of the laws used to prosecute child sex crimes in California.
Under PC 311.4, individuals face misdemeanor or felony charges if they coerce or use minors in any form of pornography. However, individuals should only face these charges if they knowingly involve a child in the production, sale, or distribution of pornographic material.
How Does California Define a Minor?
The state of California considers anyone under 18 to be a minor. Due to their age, minors do not meet the legal requirements for the age of consent for any kind of sex act, even if they initiate or attempt to pursue the physical activity. Therefore, any sex act involving a minor becomes a criminal act. Additionally, there are child labor laws regarding minors and employment.
What Is Considered Obscene Matter in California?
The courts use the term “obscene matter” to describe some forms of media that depict sexual conduct. However, not all forms of media focused on sexual activity qualify as obscene matter.
Depictions of sexual conduct that have political, artistic, literary, or scientific value do not qualify as obscene matter. Only depictions presented in an offensive way get treated as obscene matter, leading to PC 311.4 charges.
For a free legal consultation with a employment of minor in sale or distribution of obscene matter or production of pornography lawyer serving California, call (310) 896-2723
What Does California Consider Child Pornography?
PC 311.4 represents only one of the laws used to prosecute child pornography in California. Understanding the definition of child pornography can help us grasp this charge.
California defines child pornography as any material or matter that depicts sexual activity involving a person the age of 18. Materials can include:
- Photographs and negatives
For the purposes of California’s child pornography laws, sexual conduct can include acts like masturbation, sexual intercourse, anal intercourse, or oral copulation.
California Employment of Minor in Sale or Distribution of Obscene Matter or Production of Pornography Lawyer Near Me (310) 896-2723
What Are the Penalties for a PC 311.4 Conviction?
A conviction under California Penal Code Section 311.4: Employment of Minor in Sale or Distribution of Obscene Matter or Production of Pornography can have severe impacts on an individual’s life.
However, the court system does not always use the same penalties for this charge. Penalties vary depending upon whether someone:
Employed a Minor to Sell or Distribute Obscene Material
California treats employing a minor to sell, distribute, or exhibit obscene material as a wobbler. A wobbler can lead to either misdemeanor or felony charges, depending on the decisions of the prosecution.
Misdemeanor charges can lead to:
- Fines of up to $2,000
- Jail time of up to one year
Felony convictions for this PC 311.4 violation can result in up to three years of time in prison. In addition, individuals with repeated PC 311.4 convictions may end up fined up to $50,000.
Coerced, Persuaded, or Used a Minor to Participate in Pornography
Individuals who use, persuade, or coerce a minor into participating in the creation of pornography could face up to three years of prison time if they did not act with commercial intentions.
Individuals who plan to make money off the pornography face harsher penalties. In this situation, the court could sentence them to up to eight years of time in prison.
Regardless of the financial goals of the actions, using, coercing, or persuading a minor into the production of pornographic material represents a felony.
Sex Offender Registration and PC 311.4 Convictions
Individuals convicted under PC 311.4 have to register as sex offenders in the state of California. Failure to register as a sex offender represents a criminal act, leading to additional fines and incarceration.
Individuals convicted of a felony offense for PC 311.4 violations can also lose their rights to buy or keep firearms.
Finally, convictions under PC 311.4 can impact an individual’s immigration status, leading to deportation in some cases.
Complete a Free Case Evaluation form now
Can Lawyers Defend PC 311.4 Accusations?
Sex crimes lawyers can help with California Penal Code Section 311.4: Employment of Minor in Sale or Distribution of Obscene Matter or Production of Pornography accusations. Common defenses for these charges include arguing that:
- No minors contributed to the creation of the pornographic material
- The accused did not know they were working with a minor
- The accused created the explicit material for a legitimate reason
For example, perhaps the distribution aimed to make a video about the dangers associated with underage sex. The footage included some simulated scenes alluding to underage sexual contact. However, the video was created for educational purposes and should not lead to a conviction.
Lawyers may also step in if evidence for the charges came from an unlawful search and seizure. Police officers must obey the law when investigating PC 311.4 charges. Failure to do so can cause the court to throw the charges out.
Finally, individuals may build a legal defense if the police engage in entrapment to secure an arrest. Entrapment occurs when police officers convince someone to engage in criminal activity through:
- Harassment or pressure
Sexual crimes lawyers can also step in to assist after a conviction. In this situation, lawyers often focus on getting the PC 311.4 conviction expunged from an individual’s record.
Speak to a Lawyer About PC 311.4 Accusations in California
Want to learn more about California Penal Code Section 311.4: Employment of Minor in Sale or Distribution of Obscene Matter or Production of Pornography? Talk to our team at the Simmrin Law Group to discuss your legal situation.
Find out more about how a sex crimes lawyer could help by calling us or completing our online contact form.