Yet another effective review of the child porn restitution challenges facing SCOTUS

I have already blogged some previews of the fascinating Supreme Court case of Paroline v. United States even though oral argument is still six weeks away because the issues strike me as so interesting and dynamic.  (The parties’ main briefs and now lots of amicus briefs are now available via SCOTUSblog on this Paroline case page.)  And I suspect we are seeing other notable coverage of the case already because lots of others are also intrigued by the issues and arguments now before the Justices in Paroline.  The latest example comes via Emily Bazelon here at Slate, and it is headlined “Paying Amy: Doyle Paroline owned two pornographic pictures of an 8-year-old girl. How much should he have to pay?” Here are a few excerpts (with cites to some of the filed briefs):

In January, the Supreme Court will hear the appeal of Doyle Randall Paroline, who was caught with two pictures of Amy among 280 illegal images and was found liable by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 5th Circuit for the full amount of the restitution Amy, who is now 24, has claimed. The 5th Circuit said it was up to Paroline — not Amy — to find the other men who could also be on the hook for restitution and go after them for contributions. The legal theory is called joint and several liability. It’s the way courts deal with pollution cases in which a bunch of defendants all dump toxic waste into a single lake. A plaintiff sues one wealthy company for all the damages, and then that defendant has to sue other companies to share the costs.

Is this how Congress intended victims to recover from sex offenders when it passed [the Violence Against Women Act] in 1994?… Full Review

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the other thing I want to point is is..
should Paroline also go after the US goverment for planting that pic on p2p such as limewire.

Many of these comments are very sensible. Especially the comment that a restitution amount be paid into a fund for victims instead of the ever lengthening sentences meted out for CP. How does incarcerating someone for many years and implying that he is/was/or will be a molester (without evidence) help the victims? It is very hard to understand why men who have actually molested get a better deal than those who looked at a picture. I can only assume that it is because “lookers” are easy to catch (software does it), easy to convict, and easy to deal with while incarcerated. The “low hanging fruit.”

Interesting that the gov’t can plant, send and receive CP images but they’re exempt because they’re “law enforcement” doing a good work. I’d love to see how many agents take the pictures home to study them, like the San Mateo Probation Chief that got busted this year. Off duty agents probably, strongly probably, possess CP images. Just an opinion based on a good hunch.

In response to mch, it is also interesting to note, that the Center for Missing and Exploited Children declares that the victim of a C/P image is further exploited each, and every, time an image is viewed. Yet, the government analysis, in order to prosecute a case, involves the authority “experts” viewing of all images, many thousands of times, while they classify and categorize. Are they, then, not culpable too? This faulty theory, that the victim is further exploited each time an image is viewed is also used to determine how much a convicted individual must pay in restitution, the validity of which is to be considered by the SCOTUS.