Some of the most serious offences for which a person can be charged in Mississauga are child pornography offences. Law enforcement personnel invest a lot of resources in finding and apprehending these offenders, and prosecutors zealously pursue such offences.

The minimum sentence for all child pornography offences is six months in jail, but prosecutors almost always push for longer jail sentences. This is why it is imperative that you hire experienced legal counsel to build your defence. Donich Law consistently achieves favourable outcomes for clients accused of child pornography offences and has experience handling both complex international and smaller local child pornography cases.

Donich Law has devoted a portion of its practice to defending those charged with various child pornography offences and regularly obtain favourable results for our clients. We are one of the few Firm’s to have successfully defeated international child pornography operations with our dedicated internal cybersecurity team. f you are charged, your internet use will be restricted. Local media may sometimes cover child pornography stings, so a publication ban may be something to consider.

In the 2022 case of R. v. E.Z. [2022], Donich Law represented an accused charged with possessing, accessing, and distributing child pornography with seven other offenders across the globe. The Crown was seeking a seven-year jail sentence as this accused had a prior conviction for possession of child pornography.  After conducting a forensic analysis of the seized electronics and discovering an error in the information law enforcement officials had used to obtain a search warrant, counsel advanced a section 8 and 11(b) Charter challenge, and almost all charges were withdrawn.

In the 2022 case of R. v. M.C. [2002], Donich Law defended a client in Brampton accused of having distributed child pornography to an individual in Europe. In this complex case involving law enforcement officials from Canada, the United States, and Europe, counsel at Donich Law secured a withdrawal of the child pornography distribution charge.

In the 2021 case of R. v. H.H. [2021], the firm handled a complex international child pornography case involving multiple offenders in Ontario and the United States. The case required cooperation from Homeland Security in the United States, Toronto Police, and Cloud storage providers in New Zealand.

In the 2021 case of R. v. M.O. [2021], Donich Law defended a client charged with two counts of possession of child pornography. After counsel analysed the Form 1 Search Warrant, the Form 5.004 Production Warrant, and conducted a forensic analysis, they successfully negotiated a withdrawal of all charges.

In the 2021 case of R. v. J.M. [2021], Donich Law secured the withdrawal of a possession of child pornography charge after advancing the rare defence of accidental download supported by forensic metadata.

In the 2020 case of R. v. A.B. [2020], Donich Law secured the withdrawal of several making child pornography, possession of child pornography, and voyeurism charges after counsel established, through forensic analysis, that the accused could not have created the child pornography in question.

In the 2019 case of R. v. J.T. [2019], Donich Law defended a client caught using anonymous file sharing software to share and download child pornography.

In R. v. A.E.  [2019], Donich Law successfully challenged and removed the bail restriction prohibiting the client’s access to their child pending the resolution of child pornography charges without the prior approval or the Children’s Aid Society.

Donich Law has been involved in some of Ontario’s largest child pornography busts and has extensive experience successfully defending an array of child pornography cases. The Firm works closely with forensic experts, including retired Internet Child Exploitation officers, and counsel has even personally attended Police Internet Crime Headquarters to directly handle their child pornography categorization software.

Click here for more information on new changes to child sex offence sentencing and for more information on other consequences associated with a child pornography conviction. For more details on the laws about reporting child pornography and new changes to sex offence laws in 2021 click on the links above.

Having a complete understanding of the Elements of the Criminal Offence, Your Rights and the Consequences associated with a Criminal Record is necessary before any legal decisions are made. For more information on child pornography offences, click here. Our firm also conducts in-house child pornography forensics in Toronto to assist with your relevant defences. For information on our forensics practice, click here.

CBC Radio: International Crime and Cyber Attacks.

Toronto Star: Pornhub and Revenge Porn.

Toronto Star: New Corporate Liability for Child Pornography in Canada.

Toronto Star: Police Power and Social Media Companies.

Global News: Can an airline tell you to stop recording and delete a cellphone video?

Métro Montréal: Avec le temps chaud, il n’y a pas que le mercure qui grimpe: le nombre de cas de voyeurisme aussi.

CityNews: As the temperatures outside get warmer, police say the reported number of cases of voyeurism tend to rise.

VICE News: An Image Site is Victimizing Women and Little Can be Done.

Legal Information

Frequently Asked Questions

Is Child Pornography on the Rise?
Is There a Dedicated Police Force Investigating Child Pornography?
Is it Easy to Win a Child Pornography Case?
What are some Defences to Child Pornography Offences?

Additional Resources

Assaulting a Peace Officer
Child Pornography Forensics
Sex Offender Prohibition Orders
Children’s Aid Society
Sexual Assault Law in Canada
Consequences of a Criminal Record
Domestic Abuse
First Offenders
Immigration Consequences
Keeping Charges Private
Travel & US Waivers
Vulnerable Sector Screening
Elements of a Crime
Your Rights

Is Child Pornography on the Rise?

Due to the increasing prevalence of social media and smartphones among both older and younger populations, child pornography offences are on the rise. Social media applications like Snapchat and Kik allow individuals to send images to others that will then ‘disappear’ and no longer be accessible to either party after a few seconds. Many remain unaware that simply looking at a picture of an individual under the age of 16 engaged in sexual activity, nude, or with their genitals, anal region, or breasts exposed constitutes a child pornography offence.

With the COVID-19 pandemic and the resulting lockdown restrictions, much of people’s lives have shifted online, including their visits with their physicians, and their communications with sexual partners and relatives. This means it is now easier than ever to inadvertently create images that will get flagged for child pornography, even if one is simply taking pictures of their child to show their doctor or grandparent or engaged in a steamy video call with their significant other.

If you have been charged with child pornography, Donich Law can assess your situation to help you and devise a strong defence strategy that will minimize the consequences associated with these serious allegations.

Is There a Dedicated Police Force Investigating Child Pornography?

In Ontario, there is a dedicated police force within each jurisdiction that investigates child pornography offences known as the Internet Child Exploitation Unit or ICE. ICE is part of the province’s initiative to protect children from internet crimes including child pornography and child luring known as the “Ontario Provincial Strategy to Combat Internet Child Exploitation.” Police officers involved in ICE will maintain a strong presence online and investigate tips from other police units, national projects, Children’s Aid Societies, and members of the public. Their investigations can lead to mass arrests, which are often published in the media.

Is it Easy to Win a Child Pornography Case?

It can be difficult to win a child pornography case. Police will dedicate significant resources to investigating child pornography, and Crown attorneys zealously prosecute individuals they believe to be involved in the fabrication and dissemination of child pornography. Child Pornography charges, once lain, are rarely withdrawn as they require prior Deputy Crown approval and there is a strong public interest in their prosecution.

Donich Law uses independent forensic experts to analyze the Crown’s evidence and find weaknesses in their case. This will include analysis of police investigation protocols, search warrant procedures, and forensic reports of the evidence using forensic computer analysts. Using this and other strategies, the Firm will develop a defence suited to your circumstances that will help you achieve favourable results.

What are some Defences to Child Pornography Offences?

There are several defences to allegations of possessing, accessing, sharing, and making child pornography that will depend on the nature of the accused’s actions and the Crown’s evidence. Experienced counsel at Donich Law will analyze all the facts and evidence to determine which of these many defences can be successfully deployed in your case. This will include analysis of police investigation protocols, search warrant procedures, and forensic reports of the evidence using forensic computer analysts.

Where these materials are accessed, possessed, shared, or produced for a legitimate purpose that serves the public good and where the materials do not risk harming any minors, the accused will not be convicted of a child pornography offence. To serve the public good, the materials must be related to the administration of justice or to science, medicine, education, or art. Similar to this defence is the defence of innocent possession. To argue innocent possession and avoid a conviction for possession of child pornography, an accused found in possession of child pornography must be able to show that they had the innocent intentions of destroying the materials or handing them over to law enforcement.

Finally, an accused could also argue that the alleged child pornography materials were created for private use, depict lawful sexual activity, and were made by and depict the person who is in possession of the material. This exception is designed to prevent minors who take nude images of themselves from receiving child pornography charges.

Quick Facts

What is Child Pornography?

Child pornography includes any photographs, drawings, text, videos, or other audio-visual representations that show or depict a person under the age of 18 engaged in explicit sexual activity or that predominantly depicts the sexual organs or anal regions of a person under the age of 18 for a sexual purpose.

Can I See my Kids After a Child Pornography Charge?

The Children’s Aid Society often gets involved where an accused charged with child pornography has children close to them or works with children. Courts could impose conditions upon judicial interim release that prevent an accused from being around children.

Will I go to Jail for Child Pornography?

The minimum penalty for making or distributing child pornography is one-year imprisonment, and the minimum penalty for accessing or possessing child pornography is six months imprisonment. As such, it is very likely that someone convicted of child pornography will receive a jail sentence. However, sentences are always individualized, and jail time could be substituted for probation, though this is very rare.

What if I Thought the Individual Depicted was of Age?

To prove distribution of child pornography, the Crown does not need to prove that the accused knew the sexually explicit material was child pornography, but only that the accused intended to share this material with others and that it was in fact child pornography. In other words, if the accused intended to share the pornography, and the pornography is in fact child pornography, then it does not matter that the accused did not know it was child pornography.

What if a Minor Sent me Pornography?

Where a minor sends you nude images of themselves, you could be charged for viewing, sharing, or possessing them if you look at the image, send it to anyone, or save it.

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