Disney World Food Service Worker Arrested on 200 Counts of Child Porn Possession

January 4, 2010 by David S. Seltzer

As a Fort Lauderdale child pornography criminal defense attorney, I was interested to see what may be the first large child pornography arrest in Florida of 2010. According to a Jan. 4 article in the Orlando Sentinel, Lake County authorities arrested a Walt Disney World employee Dec. 24 for possession of child pornography. James Treanor, 32, was charged with 200 counts of the crime, for possessing more than 5,000 images and 75 movies involving minors in sexual situations, many of whom reportedly appeared to be under the age of 12. Treanor told authorities that he had more, but deleted it because a friend planned to stay with him over the holidays. He is jailed with bail set at $10,000 per felony violation, which could be as much as $2 million if all of the counts are felony counts.

The newspaper said Treanor had a public defender, although that person was not reached before the article was published. I hope this attorney is prepared for a battle, because Treanor is facing serious penalties if this article is correct. Each image in the defendant’s possession can create a separate criminal count, which is likely why Treanor is charged with 200 separate counts of child pornography possession. Each of these carries up to five years in prison, which means he could be sentenced to as much as 1,000 years in prison -- effectively a life sentence. Judges have some discretion in sentencing, but public opinion is not kind to people accused of this crime. This may be especially true because he worked at Disney World, and presumably had contact with children.

One of the most difficult parts of my job as a West Palm Beach child pornography possession lawyer is to fight a premature conviction in “the court of public opinion.” Long before they get to a court of law, clients who are accused of child pornography possession and related crimes face serious, sometimes permanent consequences in other parts of their lives. This can include separation from a spouse, the loss of a job, loss of friendships and even physical attacks or intimidation. Even if the client is later found not guilty, it’s generally too late to reverse most of this damage. These attitudes can also bleed into the officially neutral justice system, which is why judges frequently have no flexibility in sentencing; defendants face lifelong sex-offender registration and residency requirements; and jurors and investigators can sometimes be prejudiced.

Of course, some people accused of child pornography possession are guilty. The goal of our justice system is to determine who is guilty and who is not, and even those accused of unsavory crimes are entitled to a fair trial. Another part of my job as a Miami child pornography possession criminal defense lawyer is to ensure that my clients get that fair trial, as far as that is possible. In some cases, that means excluding people or evidence that could prejudice the jury; in other cases, it means a full computer forensic search to find evidence that might exonerate my client entirely. Even when the system produces borderline absurd results, like a 1,000-year maximum sentence, I will fight to get my clients the fairest possible day in court.