AI-generated child pornography is circulating. This California prosecutor wants to make it illegal.


AI-generated child pornography is circulating. This California prosecutor wants to make it illegal.

California Politics

Anabel Sosa

April 15, 2024

After several reports of artificial intelligence-generated child pornography surfaced in California, Ventura County Dist. Atty. Erik Nasarenko called for a change in state law to protect children who are increasingly vulnerable to this misuse of technology.

Last December, Nasarenko received his first tip about a person who had artificially taken photos of images

images of

an underage girl who performs sexual acts with an adult man.

“When it came to my attention, I said, let’s file [charges]Nasarenko told The Times. But due to current loopholes in California law, he found he couldn’t file charges in cases where children’s photos were AI-generated.

Last year, the US National Center for Missing and Exploited Children said it had received 4,700 reports of AI-generated photos showing children.


exploitation. Middle and high schools in Los Angeles have gone so far as to expel students for capturing AI-generated sexually inappropriate images of their peers. In the past five months, from Nasarenko

the Ventura County Dist. Atties

Office has received six tips regarding photos of minors performing sexual acts.

As reports of AI-generated child pornography increase,


say lawmakers and prosecutors

the state must take action

to protect children and hold suspects accountable.

Assembly Bill 1831, by Assemblymember Marc Berman (D-Menlo Park)


and co-sponsored by Nasarenko,


would make AI-generated sexually explicit images of children illegal to possess, distribute and create. The bill would also apply to photos that depict highly realistic images of children but are not real. The bill is also co-sponsored by SAG-AFTRA and the California District Attorney’s Assn.

“With the rapid advancement of AI, this technology has been used to create highly realistic images of child sexual abuse that are virtually indistinguishable from a real child,” Berman said during testimony before the Assembly Public Safety Committee this week. Under this bill, teenagers can also be charged in juvenile court.

Kaylin Hayman, who appeared regularly on a Disney Channel television show between the ages of 10 and 14, tested Tuesday that her face from that era was superimposed on an adult body participating in sex acts.

“I felt violated and disgusted to think that grown men had seen me in such a horrible way,” said Hayman, a 16-year-old survivor and victim advocate from Ventura County. “Although it is intimidating to talk about this topic, I know deep down that I need to share my voice. I need to raise awareness and bring justice to people in my position.”

The creator of the images was convicted in federal court. But Nasarenko argued that California has no accompanying statute that would have allowed him to prosecute locally.

The bill passed the Assembly Public Safety Committee with bipartisan support and now heads to the Privacy and Consumer Protection Committee.


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