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46. Protection Of Identity Of Child Witnesses And Victims

Under 18 U.S.C. § 3509, the term "child" means a person who is under the age of eighteen who is or is alleged to be a victim of a crime of physical abuse, sexual abuse, or exploitation; or a witness to a crime committed against another person.

Section 3509(d) requires that all government employees connected with "a criminal proceeding," all court personnel, the defendant and all employees of the defendant, and all members of the jury:

  1. keep all documents that disclose the name or any other information concerning a child in a secure place to which no person who does not have reason to know their contents has access; and
  2. disclose documents described (in the statute) or the information in them that concerns a child only to persons who, by reason of their participation in the proceeding, have reason to know such information.

Pursuant to 18 U.S.C. § 403, a knowing or intentional violation of the privacy protection accorded by Section 3509 is a criminal contempt punishable by a fine and up to one year's imprisonment.

[cited in USAM 9-8.220]

Updated May 19, 2015