Transmission of Material Harmful to Minors

In Florida, it is a crime to send images or information that is sexual in nature to a minor, or someone believed to be a minor.  This felony often arises out of text conversations or online chat forums.  When an adult transmits this type of material to a minor, or to law enforcement posing as a minor, that person will be charged with a felony and the consequences are very serious. 

This felony offense is often charged alongside the crimes of Traveling to Meet a Minor or Solicitation of a Child Using the Internet. 

Under Florida Statute 847.0138, Transmission of Material Harmful to Minors is committed by:

  • Transmitting an image, information, or data that is harmful to minors, as defined in s. 001, to a specific individual known by the defendant to be a minor

Under Florida Statute 847.001 (6), “Harmful to minors” means:

  • any reproduction, imitation, characterization, description, exhibition, presentation, or representation, of whatever kind or form, depicting nudity, sexual conduct, or sexual excitement when it:
    • Predominantly appeals to a prurient, shameful, or morbid interest;
    • Is patently offensive to prevailing standards in the adult community as a whole with respect to what is suitable material or conduct for minors; and
    • Taken as a whole, is without serious literary, artistic, political, or scientific value for minors.


Transmission of Material Harmful to Minors is a third-degree felony and carries a maximum penalty of five (5) years in prison, along with a fine and sex offender registration.


  • Material does not depict nudity, sexual conduct, or sexual excitement
  • Material does not meet the definition of “harmful to minors”
  • Entrapment

Statute of Limitations

In Florida, a prosecution for Transmission of Material Harmful to Minors must be commenced within three (3) years after the commission of the crime.

Get the Right Defense with a FREE Case Review

You may have been accused of Transmission of Material Harmful to Minors, but that does not mean you are guilty. There are many factual and legal issues that must be investigated and evaluated. Because of the complexities of a Transmission of Material Harmful to Minors charge, it is imperative that you speak with an experienced sex crimes lawyer right away.

If you or someone you know has been accused of a Transmission of Material Harmful to Minors sex offense in the Pinellas County or Tampa Bay area, it is very important that you contact an experienced sex crimes attorney immediately. Our team of attorneys, investigators and experts are highly experienced in defending sex crimes and will begin building your defense today.

Contact us for a free analysis of your case at our local office located in Clearwater, Florida. Contact Powers Sellers & Finkelstein, PLC today at 727-531-2926 to learn about your legal options if you have been accused of Transmission of Material Harmful to Minors. Start building your defense immediately!

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Powers Sellers & Finkelstein is committed to answering your questions about Criminal Defense law issues in Florida. We offer a free consultation and we'll gladly discuss your case with you at your convenience. Contact us today to schedule an appointment.