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Hanaway, Prosecutors Warn Kiddie Porn Now a Felony

By KBIA

Columbia, Mo. – Missouri House Speaker Catherine Hanaway and state prosecutors say they are putting sex offenders on alert that possession of child pornography is now a felony.

The legislation approved this year takes effect Saturday. It stiffens the penalties for possession of child pornography and increases penalties for anyone who gives pornographic material to children.

Hanaway says the law is specifically targeted at consumers of child pornography.

"It is so important that we go after those consumers, because if there's no market then nobody's going to be making this child pornography and abusing kids in this way," Hanaway said. "And putting children in pornographic material is child abuse. There's just no two ways about it."

The bill also requires that those in possession of child pornography to register as sex offenders. It also prohibits them from living within 1,000 feet of a school.

Possession of child pornography had previously been classified as a misdemeanor.

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