Exploitation of Children

Children are sexually exploited for many reasons. Many offenders who harm children are pedophiles. The American Psychiatric Association defines a pedophile as a person who over at least a 6-month period of time has recurrent, intense sexually arousing fantasies, sexual urges, and/or behaviors involving sexual activity with a prepubescent child or children (ages 13 years or younger). Such fantasies, sexual urges, or behaviors cause clinically significant distress or impairment in social, occupational, or other important areas of day-to-day functioning. The person inflicting this behavior is, by definition, at least 16 years of age and at least 5 years older than the child victim. This does not include a late adolescent who is involved in an ongoing sexual relationship with a 12- or 13-year-old individual, ...

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