Maine Child Pornography Laws

Child pornography is illegal in all 50 states. In Maine, it is a crime to produce, distribute, or possess child pornography. Any depiction of a minor (someone who is less than 18 years old) engaging in sexually explicit conduct constitutes child pornography. Maine defines "sexually explicit conduct" to mean any of the following acts:

  • Sexual acts
  • Bestiality
  • Masturbation
  • Sadomasochistic abuse for the purpose of sexual stimulation
  • Lewd exhibition of the genitals, anus, or pubic area, or
  • Conduct that creates the appearance of the acts listed above and also exhibits any uncovered portion of the genitals, anus, or pubic area

The charts below outline Maine's child pornography laws that criminalize the production, distribution, and possession of child pornography.

Code Section

Maine Revised Statute section 282: Sexual Exploitation of a Minor (Production of Child Pornography)

What's Prohibited?

  • Knowingly or intending that the conduct will be photographed, intentionally or knowingly employing soliciting, enticing, persuading, using, or compelling a minor (who isn't the offender's spouse) to engage in sexually explicit conduct, or
  • A parent, legal guardian, or other person who has care or custody of a minor, that knowingly or intentionally permits that minor to engage in sexually explicit conduct, knowing or intending that the conduct will be photographed

Penalties

Sexual exploitation of a minor is a class B crime.

If the offender has one or more prior convictions for sexually exploitation of a minor (or for substantially similar conduct), then the offense is a class A crime.

If the minor is less than 12 years old, then the offense is a class A crime.

Code Section

Maine Revised Statute section 283: Dissemination of Sexually Explicit Material (Distribution of Child Pornography)

What's Prohibited?

Intentionally or knowingly disseminating or possessing with the intent to disseminate any material that depicts a minor who the offender knows (or has reason to know) is a minor engaging in sexually explicit conduct.

Intent to Disseminate

Possession of 10 or more copies of material that depicts child pornography gives rise to a permissible inference that the offender possesses the material with the intent to disseminate.

Penalties

Dissemination of sexually explicit material is a class C crime.

If the offender has one or more prior convictions for dissemination of sexually explicit material (or for substantially similar conduct), then the offense is a class B crime.

If the material depicts a minor who is less than 12 years old engaging in sexually explicit conduct, then the offense is a class A crime.

Code Section

Maine Revised Statute section 284: Possession of Sexually Explicit Material (Possession of Child Pornography)

What's Prohibited?

Intentionally or knowingly transporting, exhibiting, purchasing, possessing, or accessing with the intent to view any material that the offender knows or should know depicts a person who is less than 16 years old engaging in sexually explicit conduct.

Penalties

Possession of sexually explicit material is a class D crime.

If the offender has one or more prior convictions for possession of sexually explicit material (or for substantially similar conduct), then the offense is a class C crime.

If the child depicted is less than 12 years old then the offense is a class C crime.

Possible Defense

It is a defense that the person depicted is the defendant's spouse.

Sex Offender Registry

The crimes outlined above are sex crimes and people convicted under these statutes are required to register as sex offenders with the Maine Sex Offender Registry. Most sex offenders are required to register for 10 years, however, if the conviction is for a sexually violent offense then the offender is required to register for life. For more information visit FindLaw's section on the Sex Offender Registration and Notification Act.

Additional Resources

State laws change frequently. For case specific information regarding Maine's child pornography laws contact a local sex crime attorney.

Next Steps: Search for a Local Attorney

Contact a qualified attorney.