CASE LAW UPDATE:  Whether the trial court did not err in concluding that possession and dissemination of child pornography were separate criminal acts?

Defendant was convicted of possession and dissemination of child pornography.  He appealed his sentence.  He argued that the trial court erred in imposing sentences for both possession, and, dissemination of child pornography on the grounds that they were committed as part of a single behavioral incident.  The Minnesota Court of Appeals concluded that the dissemination and possession offense were separate criminal acts because they did not share unity of time.  Affirmed.

Commentary:  This is a significant case.  One would think that one has to possess child pornography in order to disseminate it, and therefore that this would be a single behavioral incident.  This is important because it determines whether you will be sentenced for just one crime, or two.  So, the conclusion in this case make a substantial difference in the potential sentence to be imposed.  So, the conclusion in this case means that the defendant could be sentenced for two separate crimes; not just one, potentially making his sentencing much longer.

State v. Rudquist, A20-1012, Carver County.

Minnesota Criminal Defense Lawyer Lynne Torgerson was not attorney of record in this case.

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