United States v. Roybal

Summarized by:

  • Court: 9th Circuit Court of Appeals Archives
  • Area(s) of Law: Criminal Law
  • Date Filed: 12-10-2013
  • Case #: 12-30350
  • Judge(s)/Court Below: District Judge Mahan for the Court; Circuit Judges M.D. Smith, Jr. and Hurwitz
  • Full Text Opinion

Allowing a child pornography victim to access pornographic images stored on a computer and “create copies of those images” constitutes “distribution” under 18 U.S.C. § 2252A(a)(2), regardless of whether the "child victim was in-person rather than over the internet."

Roger Roybal pled guilty to receiving child pornography. After holding that Roybal’s acts of “showing” child pornography to the child victim qualified as “distribution,” the district court imposed a "six-level sentencing enhancement under U.S.S.G. § 2G2.2(b)(3)(D)." On appeal, Roybal argued that he did not "distribute" within the meaning of 18 U.S.C. § 2252A(a)(2). Additionally, Roybal argued that he could not “be required to undergo penile plethysmograph testing as part of a sex-offender treatment program" as ordered by the district court. The Ninth Circuit declined to address the question raised on appeal, finding Roybal's act of permitting the victim to "print a book of child pornography from the images stored on his computer" independently qualified as "distribution." The panel also held that as a condition of his supervised release, Roybal could not be forced to undergo such testing because "the district court made no finding which would merit the imposition of penile plethysmograph testing.” AFFIRMED.

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