March 5, 2020

STATEMENT – NCOSE Urges DOJ to Prosecute Obscenity Amid Attorney General Barr’s Efforts to Combat Online Child Sexual Exploitation

Washington, DC (March 5, 2020) – The National Center on Sexual Exploitation commended the announcement that Attorney General William Barr and leaders from Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and the United Kingdom, will be taking joint steps to end the exploitation and abuse of children online.

“We commend Attorney General Barr and the other world leaders who announced their intent to fight online child sexual exploitation across the globe,” said Patrick A. Trueman, president and CEO of the National Center on Sexual Exploitation.

However, the efforts will fall short unless the major adult obscenity websites accessed by millions across the globe are prosecuted. U. S. law can be utilized for this purpose if Attorney General Barr would be motivated to do so.

“Some mainstream pornography websites have been caught mixing child sexual abuse videos (i.e. underage pornography) with adult material and can thus be charged with child pornography offenses. Further, we also know that the consumption of adult obscenity leads many to seek out harder and more deviant pornography including child pornography. Researchers have found that individuals who begin consuming adult pornography at a younger age were more likely to engage in later use of pornography depicting animals and children than those with a later age of first use.[i]

Therefore, the federal government ought to enforce adult obscenity laws, which have been repeatedly upheld by the Supreme Court, if they are ever going to decrease the demand for child sexual abuse material,” Trueman concluded.


[i] Kathryn C. Seigfried-Spellar and Marcus K. Rogers, “Does Deviant Pornography Use Follow a Guttman-like Progression,” Computers in Human Behavior 29 (2013): 1997–2003.

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