Norwalk Sextortion Lawyer
Whether it involves harming someone by releasing their private intimate photos without their consent or threatening to do so unless the other person hands over money or something else of value, “sextortion” allegations in Connecticut is treated very seriously and can lead to life-altering criminal sanctions even for a first-time offender. If you have been accused of any kind of sex crime, speaking with and retaining a skilled Norwalk sextortion lawyer is a key first step towards effectively contesting your charges and preserving your best interests.
“Sextortion” as a Misdemeanor Offense
There are two sections of the Connecticut Penal Code under which law enforcement authorities and court officials could pursue a “sextortion” case, each of which addresses a slightly different scenario. The less severe variant of this offense is defined under Connecticut General Statutes (C.G.S.) § 53a-189c as “Unlawful Dissemination of an Intimate Image”–sometimes colloquially called “revenge porn”—
According to this statute, someone commits “Unlawful Dissemination of an Intimate Image” if they intentionally publish, distribute, or otherwise disseminate a photo or video of a clearly identifiable person engaging in sexual display or conduct in a way that meets all the following additional criteria:
- The dissemination occurred without the depicted person’s consent;
- The depicted person was not engaging in sexual display or conduct in a public and/or commercial setting, and they had a reasonable expectation that the image(s) in question would remain private;
- The depicted person suffered some form of harm—financial, social, emotional, physical, or any other type—as a direct result of the dissemination; and/or
- The dissemination did not “serve the public interest” in any way.
Someone who disseminates an intimate image in this way to one other person by any means has committed a Class A misdemeanor offense, meaning a conviction could lead to maximum penalties of one year in jail and $2,000 in fines. As a Norwalk sextortion attorney can further explain, though, this offense can alternatively be prosecuted as a felony under certain circumstances.
When Does “Sextortion” Become a Felony Offense?
Specifically, someone who unlawfully disseminates an intimate image to two or more people by using an interactive computer service, telecommunications service, or information service has committed a Class D felony. This would mean that maximum sanctions upon conviction would rise to a five-year term in prison and up to $5,000 in fines.
Additionally, someone who threatens to unlawfully disseminate an intimate image with intent to compel the depicted person to pay them money or give them something else of value has likely committed Larceny by Extortion, which C.G.S. § 53a-122 defines as a Class B felony punishable by up to 20 years in prison and $15,000 in fines regardless of the amount of money allegedly obtained through the extortion scheme. Support from a seasoned defense lawyer is crucial to handling a sextortion accusation in Norwalk.
Talk to a Norwalk Sextortion Attorney About Your Legal Options
Sextortion charges can be difficult to contest effectively in court and equally challenging to move on from in the public sphere, even if your criminal proceedings do not end with a conviction. Put simply, this is not the kind of allegation you want to try handling by yourself–fortunately, you do not have to.
Call the Law Offices of Mark Sherman today to schedule your confidential consultation and learn more about how a Norwalk sextortion lawyer could assist you, and click here to visit our Avvo profile with over 300 certified reviews from past clients to see what they have to say about working with our team.