(1) In addition to penalties set forth in RCW 9.68A.070
, a person who is convicted of violating RCW 9.68A.070
shall be assessed a fee of one thousand dollars for each depiction or image of visual or printed matter that constitutes a separate conviction.
(2) Fees assessed under this section shall be collected by the clerk of the court and remitted to the state treasurer for deposit into the child rescue fund created in RCW 9.68A.200
Findings—2015 c 279: "The legislature finds that sexual abuse and exploitation of children robs victims of their childhood and irrevocably interferes with their emotional and psychological development. Victims of child pornography often experience severe and lasting harm from the permanent memorialization of the crimes committed against them. Child victims endure depression, withdrawal, anger, and other psychological disorders. Victims also experience feelings of guilt and responsibility for the sexual abuse as well as feelings of betrayal, powerlessness, worthlessness, and low self-esteem. Each and every time such an image is viewed, traded, printed, or downloaded, the child in that image is victimized again.
The legislature finds that the expansion of the internet and computer-related technologies have led to a dramatic increase in the availability of child pornography by simplifying how it can be created, distributed, and collected. Investigators and prosecutors report dramatic increases in the number and violent character of the sexually abusive images of children being trafficked through the internet. Between 2005 and 2009, the national center for missing and exploited children's child victim identification program has seen a four hundred thirty-two percent increase in child pornography films and files submitted for identification of the children depicted. The United States department of justice estimates that pornographers have recorded the abuse of more than one million children in the United States alone. Furthermore, a well-known study conducted by crimes against children research center for the national center for missing and exploited children concluded that an estimated forty percent of those who possess child pornography have also directly victimized a child and fifteen percent have attempted to entice a child over the internet.
The legislature finds that due to a lack of dedicated resources, only two percent of known child exploitation offenders are being investigated. The legislature finds that additional funding sources are needed to ensure that law enforcement agencies can adequately investigate and prosecute offenders and victims can receive necessary services, including mental health treatment. Finally, the legislature finds that offenders convicted of crimes relating to child pornography should bear the high cost of investigations and prosecutions of these crimes and also the cost of providing services to victims." [ 2015 c 279 § 1