This feature article about the Marsh Law Firm's efforts to secure restitution for victims of child pornography appears in this month's American Bar Association Journal which is read by over one million attorneys and corporate counsel worldwide. Here are several excerpts from Pricing Amy: Should Those Who Download Child Pornography Pay the Victims?
It’s not exactly clear when Amy’s pictures began circulating online, but court records indicate the digital images date back to as early as 1998.
Amy and her lawyer are, however, fighting back. Her battle is part of a series of cases—now wending their way through the federal courts—trying to help the victims of child pornography by seeking financial restitution, not from the perpetrator but from the untold number of people who subsequently download their pornographic images.
Amy could be considered the leader in this legal trend. Her pictures are among the most widely traded in the underground world of online child pornography.
Using the restitution provisions of the Violence Against Women Act, Marsh has begun utilizing the courts to request financial restitution from those convicted of possessing images of Amy’s child sexual abuse.
The novel and controversial requests don’t seek to hold possessors responsible for the original exploitation of Amy. Rather, they seek restitution under VAWA, as authorized by the Crime Victims’ Rights Act, for harm done to Amy each time someone downloads her uncle’s pornographic images of her.
This is an excellent article which is accurate, thoroughly researched, and balanced.
Read the entire piece online at the ABA Journal website here. Please leave any comments on the ABA Journal website.