Long-Running Mike Jones Case Dismissed by Court

Rhett Pardon
McHENRY COUNTY, Ill. — An Illinois judge on Wednesday dismissed all criminal obscenity and child porn counts against former CD Babes owner Mike Jones.

“The case is over, and we’ll later make a motion to return all of the evidence that was seized,” his attorney J.D. Obenberger told XBiz, noting that Jones was his first adult industry client. “It has been a long-running case, almost five years.”

Jones was indicted after having his home and offices raided by police. At the time of the raid, police seized adult tapes, financial records, videotapes, floppy disks and computers, much of which were later used as evidence against him.

During a police investigation, forensic analysts recovered deleted contents of an Internet Explorer cache file that included thumbnail images accessed within minutes of each other, Obenberger said.

After the indictment, Jones sold CDBabes to Gecko Productions, which permanently closed its website this month due to new 2257 record-keeping requirements.

Obenberger said the prosecution’s case first became limp when they waited too long to ask Judge Sharon Prather to reconsider her decision on the suppression of evidence taken from the Jones' household.

In January 2004, Prather ordered all evidence seized from the raid on Jones' property suppressed after ruling that the search warrant used at the time was overbroad.

Prather determined that the search warrant used in the Jones case authorized a "general search" for obscene and underage materials, but that it lacked particularity that might direct and limit the officers as to what they were to seize.

She further determined that the search amounted to an improper prior restraint on free speech without adequate judicial oversight.

Obenberger told XBiz at the time of Prather's ruling that the officers at the scene seized adult tapes held for private purposes in two bedrooms, seized the computer that Jones' 14-year-old daughter used for schoolwork, and a laundry list of other irrelevant materials.