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What is sexual exploitation of a minor in Maine?

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The crime of sexual exploitation of a minor is outlined in Section 282 of the Maine Criminal Code and occurs when a child is used for the purposes of creating pornography.

The laws apply to anyone who knowingly induces a person under age 16 to engage in sexual acts to create child pornography – or knowingly allowing someone else to create it.

It is considered a Class B crime (felony) with a minimum sentence of five years.

It may be elevated to a Class A crime with a mandatory minimum 10-year sentence and the possibility of up to 30 years behind bars if the accused has a prior record for a related offense or the child is under 12 years old.

In the case where an alleged perpetrator is less than five years older than the other person, the “Romeo and Juliet “law applies whereby the offender cannot be prosecuted, providing no threats were involved and the other person is not under the age of 14.

Note, however, that parents or legal guardians are never exempt from prosecution for such crimes regardless of the ages of the individuals involved.

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