"Cyber crimes" refers to a broad category of offenses, from downloading or producing child pornography to cyber bullying and stalking. While many of these crimes can also be committed in person, what makes cyber crimes unique is that they are committed by way of electronic means, such as a computer or cell phone. A recent article told of charges filed against a Michigan man for Internet crimes.
U.S. Attorneys charged the 36-year-old Michigan man with multiple computer crimes, including 18 counts of cyber stalking and five counts of producing child pornography. The U.S. Attorney's office accuses the man of attempting to solicit pornographic images from approximately 18 minors in western New York State. The solicitation of the images allegedly took place over the Internet and through text messages.
Both of the charges filed against the Michigan man are very serious crimes that carry very serious sentences in the event of a convicted. The fact that the alleged victims in the stalking charge were minors only exacerbates an already bad situation. If he is convicted of cyber stalking he could potentially face up to 10 years in federal prison. If he is convicted on the production of child pornography charges he could face between 15 and 30 years in prison.
Whether someone is facing federal or state charges for a computer crime, like cyber stalking or the production of illegal pornographic content, it is important to begin crafting a criminal defense strategy immediately. In addition to the threat of serious jail time and heavy fines, each of these charges also comes with a heavy stigma that can be even harder to shed than the criminal charges themselves. This is especially true when computer sex crimes are involved.
Source: WIVB, "Man indicted, preyed on minors online," Jan. 23, 2013