New York sex abuse victim attorney, James Marsh, explains the steps a victim of child pornography should take in order to preserve evidence and maintain a legal case against the perpetrators.
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The first step for a victim of child pornography to establish a legal case is really to ascertain whether or not their images are in circulation. And what has become of their images and basically, who was the producer. Sometimes this can be very difficult for children especially when the child pornography occurred many years ago where they’re not even aware of their legal rights. It’s a very complicated system for victims facing child pornography crimes and exploitation. The federal criminal justice system can be very complicated for a victim to understand and most victims aren’t even aware that there are civil remedies. Like what we do with our victims is to make sure that they have an adequate baseline psychological evaluation, a forensic evaluation that they’re achieving treatment and therapy for what happened to them.
And that all of their other needs are being met, which are a variety of needs for victims whether it be childcare, daycare, having appropriate educational setting, making sure that they’re getting the therapy and the support that they need, explaining the process to their parents, and linking them up with both the federal restitution system and any potential civil claims. It can be quite a long and confusing process for victims, again, sometimes we’re dealing with children, and sometimes we’re dealing with young people between the ages of 18 and 25. But we have the experience of dealing with this through both civil remedies and restitution to be able to help victims establish their rights, get treatment, and be able to start rebuilding their lives from what may have happened decades ago. But for most of our victims is very real because the nature of the internet means that child pornography your images, your videos, your child sex abuse is basically going to be out there for a very long time.