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Congressmen Continue Push for Increased Porn Prosecutions

Congressmen Continue Push for Increased Porn Prosecutions
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Apr 7, 2011 4:45 PM PDT    Text size: 

 WASHINGTON — More than 40 U.S. senators and representatives have signed a letter addressed to U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder calling on the Department of Justice to increase federal prosecutions of pornography.

The letter urges Holder to "vigorously" enforce federal obscenity laws "against major commercial distributors of hardcore adult pornography." It also urges Holder to tell  the FBI and U.S. Attorneys to "work together to combat the growing scourge of obscenity in America."

The senators add that "adult obscenity is not protected by the 1st Amendment."

Most of the signatures were from conservative Republicans, but a small group of Democrats including California's Dianne Feinstein and Joe Lieberman also signed on.

Sen. Orrin Hatch, who sponsored and signed the letter, has complained that the Justice Department hasn't focused enough on large-scale pornography producers.

The letter reads in part: "In June 1998, when you served as Deputy Attorney General, you directed U.S. Attorneys to enforce these laws.  The need for consistent and vigorous enforcement is even greater today because both obscene pornography and evidence of its harms have multiplied since then.  Laws exist to respond to this crisis, but they need to be enforced."

The ASACP sent its own letter to Congress last month providing various counterpoints in support of the adult industry. ASACP's CEO Joan Irvine said the industry takes measures to fight child pornography and increasing obscenity prosections would be unfair.

"There is no need for this action, since the legal adult entertainment industry is not involved in obscenity," Irvine said.

ASACP's entire letter can be read here.

Feinstein was not immediately available to XBIZ for comment by post time.

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