The German Parliament reportedly passed a bill that downgrades possession of child pornography from a felony to a misdemeanor.

“The Legal Affairs Committee paved the way for a reduction in the minimum penalties for ‘dissemination, acquisition and possession of child pornographic content’. A bill introduced by the federal government (20/10540 ) passed the committee in an amended version with votes from the SPD, Alliance 90/The Greens and FDP as well as The Left against the votes from the CDU/CSU and with the AfD abstaining,” the Bundestag, Germany’s federal parliament, stated in a press release.

“Germany’s Parliament has officially voted to decriminalize the possession of child pornography. The move is being celebrated by a ‘pedophile rights’ activist group which has also called for the age of consent to be dropped to 12,”
REDUXX wrote.

From the Bundestag:

According to the draft, possession and acquisition should in future be punishable with a minimum penalty of three months’ imprisonment, and distribution with a minimum penalty of six months’ imprisonment. The offenses regulated in Section 184b of the Criminal Code are therefore classified as misdemeanors and not as crimes. This should make it possible again in the future to discontinue proceedings in accordance with Sections 153 and 154 of the Code of Criminal Procedure (StPO) or to dispose of them by means of a penalty order in accordance with Sections 407 ff. of the Code of Criminal Procedure.

At the request of the coalition factions, the committee decided to make a consequential change to Section 127 of the Criminal Code (“Operating criminal trading platforms on the Internet”). It is intended to ensure that offenses that have been downgraded to misdemeanors remain covered by the standard.

In its draft, the federal government cites feedback and demands from practice for a tightening of the penalty framework in 2021. The lack of the possibility of discontinuing proceedings or disposing of them by means of a penalty order has shown that “in proceedings involving suspected offenses at the lower end of criminal liability, this means that a reaction appropriate to the offense and guilt is no longer possible in every individual case is guaranteed”. The conference of the justice ministers of the federal states also joined the demands from practice. The maximum penalties, which were also made more stringent with the 2021 reform, will be retained.

The final discussion in the Bundestag is on the agenda on Thursday evening, May 16, 2024. The draft law does not require approval in the Bundesrat.

REDUXX reports:

A statement of opposition was released by the Christian Democratic Union (CDU) Christian Social Union of Bavaria (CSU). “The distribution, possession and acquisition of child pornography must, in principle, remain classified as crimes,” reads the declaration.

“Even if the increase in the penalty range in Section 184b of the Criminal Code in 2020 has led to practical problems in certain cases, a blanket reduction in the penalty range is the wrong solution. A change should be limited to the problem cases and solve them effectively. Scientific findings show that if the penalty framework shifts downwards, the penalties imposed in practice also tend to be lower.”

The rationale behind the downgrading of the crime to a misdemeanor included consideration for parents and teachers of children who download the content in order to inform law enforcement. “Such cases have occurred particularly frequently among parents and teachers of older children or young people who found child pornography on them and passed it on to other parents, teachers or the school management to inform them of the problem,” reads Article 1 of the bill.

The legislation continues: “A downgrade to a misdemeanor is also urgently required in order to be able to respond appropriately and with the necessary flexibility to the large proportion of juvenile offenders. Here, too, the perpetrators generally do not act in order to be sexually aroused by the child pornography content, but rather out of a drive typical of the adolescent stage of development, such as naivety, curiosity, thirst for adventure or the desire to impress.”

However, despite acknowledging such circumstances, the bill has not made certain exceptions, but rather downgrades possession of child pornography altogether – a fact that has not gone unnoticed by pro-pedophile campaigners.

Per Daily Caller:

The German pro-pedophile activist group Krumme-13, or K13, praised the bill in a May 17 blog post written by Dieter Gieseking. “The German Bundestag decided on Thursday night with a majority of votes … to withdraw the unconstitutional tightening of punishments … This will turn child porn from a crime back into a misdemeanor, Gieseking writes.

“No politician in all factions apologized to the thousands upon thousands of those affected who fell victim” to the 2021 law, Gieseking continues. He has been charged repeatedly with alleged possession of child pornography and founded K13, Reduxx notes.

The German federal government in its draft bill “cites feedback and demands … ‘that a reaction appropriate to the crime and guilt’” under the 2021 law was “‘no longer guaranteed in every individual case.’” The Conference of Justice Ministers of the Länder is included in demanding reform to the 2021 law, the Parliament statement notes.

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