A. Indecent behavior with juveniles is the commission of any of the following acts with the intention of arousing or gratifying the sexual desires of either person:
(1) Any lewd or lascivious act upon the person or in the presence of any child under the age of seventeen, where there is an age difference of greater than two years between the two persons. Lack of knowledge of the child’s age shall not be a defense; or
(2) The transmission, delivery or utterance of any textual, visual, written, or oral communication depicting lewd or lascivious conduct, text, words, or images to any person reasonably believed to be under the age of seventeen and reasonably believed to be at least two years younger than the offender. It shall not be a defense that the person who actually receives the transmission is not under the age of seventeen.
B. The trial judge shall have the authority to issue any necessary orders to protect the safety of the child during the pendency of the criminal action and beyond its conclusion.
C. For purposes of this Section,”textual, visual, written, or oral communication” means any communication of any kind, whether electronic or otherwise, made through the use of the United States mail, any private carrier, personal courier, computer online service, Internet service, local bulletin board service, Internet chat room, electronic mail, online messaging service, or personal delivery or contact.
D. The provisions of this Section shall not apply to the transference of such images by a telephone company, cable television company, or any of its affiliates, free over-the-air television broadcast station, an Internet provider, or commercial on-line service provider, or to the carrying, broadcasting, or performing of related activities in providing telephone, cable television, Internet, or commercial on-line services.
E. An offense committed under this Section and based upon the transmission and receipt of textual, visual, written, or oral communication may be deemed to have been committed where the communication was originally sent, originally received, or originally viewed by any person.
F. After the institution of prosecution, access to and the disposition of any material seized as evidence of this offense shall be in accordance with R.S. 46:1845.
G. Any evidence resulting from the commission of a crime under this Section shall constitute contraband.
H.(1) Whoever commits the crime of indecent behavior with juveniles shall be fined not more than five thousand dollars, or imprisoned with or without hard labor for not more than seven years, or both, provided that the defendant shall not be eligible to have his conviction set aside or his prosecution dismissed in accordance with the provisions of Code of Criminal Procedure Article 893.
(2) Whoever commits the crime of indecent behavior with juveniles on a victim under the age of thirteen when the offender is seventeen years of age or older, shall be punished by imprisonment at hard labor for not less than two nor more than twenty-five years. At least two years of the sentence imposed shall be served without benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence.
(3)(a) In addition, the court shall order that the personal property used in the commission of the offense shall be seized and impounded, and after conviction, sold at public sale or public auction by the district attorney in accordance with R.S. 15:539.1.
(b) The personal property made subject to seizure and sale pursuant to Subparagraph (a) of this Paragraph may include, but shall not be limited to, electronic communication devices, computers, computer related equipment, motor vehicles, photographic equipment used to record or create still or moving visual images of the victim that are recorded on paper, film, video tape, disc, or any other type of digital recording media.
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Updated: April 9, 2012