S.1308, Protecting Children from Internet Pornographers Act of 2011 — Summary

S.1308, Protecting Children from Internet Pornographers Act of 2011

Introduced by Sen. Orrin Hatch on June 30, 2011

Section 1: Short Title.  “Protecting Children from Internet Pornographers Act of 2011.”  Parallels H.R.1981, introduced by Judiciary Committee Chairman Rep. Lamar Smith and Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz.

Section 2: Financial Facilitation of Access to Child Pornography.  Creates a new federal crime for knowingly conducting or conspiring to conduct a financial transaction that facilitates access to, or possession of, child pornography; penalties include fine or up to 20 years in prison; does not apply to financial transactions conducted in cooperation with law enforcement.

Section 3: Money Laundering Predicate.  Adds offenses including financial facilitation of access to child pornography to the list of unlawful activities under 18 U.S.C. §1956, the federal money laundering statute.

Section 4: Record Retention by Electronic Communication Service Providers.  Requires providers of electronic communication or remote computing services to retain for at least 18 months a log of network addresses assigned to subscriber accounts.  This requirement does not apply to wireless IP addresses.  This section also expresses the sense of Congress that records should be stored securely to protect customer privacy.

Section 5: No Cause of Action for Required Disclosures.  Adds the retention of network addresses required by this legislation to the list of information disclosures for which there can be no cause of action.

Section 6: Good Faith Reliance on Retention Requirement.  Adds good faith reliance on court order, subpoena, or other legal authorization for disclosure of network addresses to the defenses against a civil cause of action listed in 18 U.S.C. §2707(e).

Section 7: Subpoena Authority.  Authorizes the U.S. Marshals Service to issue administrative subpoenas during investigations of unregistered sex offenders.  The Adam Walsh Act put the Marshals Service in charge of apprehending sex offenders who have failed to register.  Administrative subpoena authority allows the Marshals quickly to access hotel, rental car, of airline records.

Section 8: Protection of Child Witnesses.  Provides for courts to issue orders protecting from harassment or intimidation children who are witnesses or victims in federal criminal cases or investigations and provides sanctions for those who knowingly and intentionally violate such orders.

Section 9: Sentencing Guidelines.  Directs the U.S. Sentencing Commission to ensure that federal sentencing guidelines provide for additional penalties for crimes such as sex trafficking of children and child pornography.

Section 10: Enhanced Penalties for Possession of Child Pornography.  Increases the maximum penalty for child pornography offenses from 10 to 20 years.  Since the Supreme Court made the federal sentencing guidelines discretionary, federal courts have begun lowering sentences for child pornography.

Section 11: Administrative Subpoenas.  Makes a conforming amendment to 18 U.S.C. §3486 to authorize the administrative subpoenas provided for in Section 7 above.