Former Police Officer Charged With Child Pornography…

Your Miami criminal defense attorney will advise you on whether you should testify.

Former Police Officer Charged With Child Pornography

A retired City of Miami police officer was recently charged both in federal and state court for a variety of offenses. He is accused of downloading hundreds of child pornography videos in federal court. He was formally charged with possession and distribution of child pornography. After his release on bond, he was re-arrested by local authorities and charged among other things with lewd and lascivious molestation of a child. Juan Roman appeared at his state court bond hearing and was held without bail. Federal cyber-crimes investigators raided Roman’s house back in August and according to court documents, found over 50 videos depicting child pornography. While the federal authorities were combing through his computer hard drive, they allegedly found the video of him molesting a young girl in a bathroom.

The age of the internet caused a boom in the child pornography industry. With this boom, many changes have occurred in all aspects of the criminal justice system. Federal and state law enforcement agencies have formed specialized task forces to combat the child pornography issues that have become so prevalent in our society. Prosecuting bodies have created specialized units within their offices to investigate and prosecute all types of child pornography cases. The investigators and prosecutors have received specialized training in investigating and prosecuting cyber-crimes, such as child pornography.

Federal and state legislatures have also acted by creating statutes that criminalize all aspects of child pornography. Many of the federal statutes that were enacted attach significant mandatory minimum sentences that must be imposed by the trial court judge. Violations of 18 U.S. Code, Section 2252 is often charged in cases relating to child pornography. It is a crime to knowingly transport or ship by computer or by the mail and depiction involving a minor engaging in sexually explicit conduct. Anyone who receives child pornography through the mails or via computer can be charged with violating the same statute. A violation of this statute carries a five year mandatory minimum sentence. The same statute also criminalizes the simple possession of child pornography, but does not implement the mandatory minimum sentence. However, a person charged with simple possession, can get up to five years for every image in their possession.

Other statutes that criminalize the sexual exploitation of children and the coercion and enticement of minors also carry significant mandatory minimum sentences, 15 and 10 years respectively. Most arrests come as a result of searches of computers and cell phones. There are only two ways that law enforcement can gain access to a computer or cell phone. Law enforcement can obtain a search warrant or obtain consent from the owner. If a search warrant is issued, there is not much that can be done about that. Remember, that even though a search warrant exists, you still have the right to remain silent in the event an arrest has been made. Do not help law enforcement by admitting knowledge of the contents of the phone or computer. Without that admission, there are defenses to this type of case. Also, never consent to the search of a computer or cell phone. Make law enforcement obtain a warrant signed by a state or local judge. Most importantly, anyone being investigated for any of the charges listed above should immediately retain a criminal lawyer experienced in handling these types of matters.

How We Can Help
If you, a friend or a family member find themselves in a situation such as this, please call the Law Office of Scott A. Ferris, P.A. at 305 670-3330 right away. Scott A. Ferris, Esq. is a licensed criminal law attorney who has been practicing law since 1987. He is available whenever you need him to defend your rights. Please learn about our firm at