Texas law considers the welfare of children, disabled persons, and the elderly of the utmost importance. The inability of these protected groups to speak out for their wellbeing or to take action against predatory adults makes it all the more important for the law to protect their best interests at all times. Because of the internet’s saturation with child pornography and the difficulty of catching those responsible for creating and distributing indecent images, Texas has created laws that crack down all the harder on people who sexually exploit children.
But while there are many types of child exploitation, Texas law means something very specific when it comes to charges of sexual exploitation of a child. If you are facing charges for this serious crime, it is important to understand what it is and what the consequences are.
What is Child Sexual Exploitation in Texas?
When someone knowingly, intentionally, or recklessly exploits a child (or an elderly or disabled person), they have broken Texas Penal Code section 32.53. Exploitation is defined as the improper or illegal use of a child for personal benefit, including financial benefit. This includes forcing a child to do anything against the law, including sexual acts, illegal labor, child sex trafficking, production of child pornography, and even using a child to transport drugs or weapons. This law dovetails with several other laws prohibiting inappropriate sexual behavior with children and someone charged with child sex crimes can be prosecuted under all relevant sections of the law....