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Sexual Exploitation of a Minor

Utah Code Section: 76-5b-201



(1)A person is guilty of sexual exploitation of a minor:(a)when the person:

(i)knowingly produces, possesses, or possesses with intent to distribute child pornography; or

(ii)intentionally distributes or views child pornography; or

(b)if the person is a minor's parent or legal guardian and knowingly consents to or permits the minor to be sexually exploited as described in Subsection (1)(a).

(2)Sexual exploitation of a minor is a second degree felony.

(3)It is a separate offense under this section:

(a)for each minor depicted in the child pornography; and

(b)for each time the same minor is depicted in different child pornography.

(4)It is an affirmative defense to a charge of violating this section that no person under 18 years of age was actually depicted in the visual depiction or used in producing or advertising the visual depiction.


Sexual exploitation of a minor prosecutions typically follow this pattern:

1. An officer identifies that a known child pornography image is being shared by a particular IP address on a file sharing site such as Bit Torrent.

2. The officer determines who the IP address is assigned to and obtains a search warrant.

3. The officer executes the warrant and seizes and searches all devices for child pornography.

4. The officer questions the people in the home about: (a) who had access to the computer; (b) whether anyone downloaded or viewed child pornography; (c) did they know they were downloading child pornography.

The typical defenses associated with the typical pattern of sexual exploitation of a minor case are: (1) whether the device on which child pornography was located was used/accessible by more than one person; (2) whether the suspect device was purchased new or used; (3) whether the person knew what they were downloading was child pornography (knowing/intentional requirement).

Sex Offender Registration


77-41-106.  Registerable offenses. 

(7)Section 76-5b-201, sexual exploitation of a minor.

A conviction of sexual exploitation of a minor is a lifetime registerable offense.

However, a conviction of an attempted sexual exploitation of a minor is a 10 year registerable offense, under UCA 77-41-105(3)(a).  



Jail/Prison time, fines & restitution


76-3-203.  Felony conviction -- Indeterminate term of imprisonment. 
A person who has been convicted of a felony may be sentenced to imprisonment for an indeterminate term as follows:

In the case of a felony of the second degree, unless the statute provides otherwise, for a term of not less than one year nor more than 15 years.

76-3-301.  Fines of persons. 

(1)A person convicted of an offense may be sentenced to pay a fine, not exceeding:

(a)$10,000 for a felony conviction of the first degree or second degree;



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