Germany: Child pornography’s legal grey zone

A German ex-parliamentarian is being investigated for possessing child pornography. Prosecutors and other experts are often forced to make difficult distinctions on whether a given image crosses the line into illegality.

When it comes to the legal definition of child pornography in Germany, a large grey area exists. Just by entering relevant terms in a search engine or trying to open a picture on a computer, individuals can face prosecution. That’s because searching for and attempting to obtain child pornography are illegal in Germany, just as the possession of such materials is.

Only certain experts or investigators are allowed to search for the images. If private citizens search on their own – even if their intent is to help the police – they are committing a criminal offense. Full Article

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Geeez… what is it with those Germans? What kind of standards are those? Actual children under 14 must be depicted? Actual sexual conduct must be depicted? So no prison for taking photos of a perfectly legal act of those 17-year olds who are considered old enough to engage in sexual conduct, like in some US States? So no felony prosecution for that teenage girl with the nude selfie in the article on this site a while back?

And the punishment… where is the mandatory minimum of 5 years? Or 20 years, consecutively without parole, per image? And what is this max for ‘severe distribution’ – 10 years? Absurd. Hey, how about life or hundreds of years? Actual judging and sentencing by… actual judges? Not to mention the lack of a life long public shaming registry?

The humanity!! And to think that last time I visited Germany it certainly SEEMED like a perfectly civilized and pleasant place. If they only knew.

I think Germany has learned a lesson from its dark past, both in increasing harshness of the penal state leading up to the third Reich, and the Staci of East Germany. The strong arm totalitarian tactics lead to war and a break down of civil society, not security.

Does anyone know how to tell the age of a naked teen? How do you know if your naughty or nice?