Trial Date Set for Movies by Mail Obscenity Case

Tod Hunter
SALT LAKE CITY — A trial has been scheduled for Jan. 9 in the case of Sami and Michael Harb on obscenity charges for shipping three videos to FBI agents in Utah after the videos were ordered from the Harbs' Cincinnati-based online company Movies by Mail.

The charges were filed June 8, 2007, and unsealed June 17, 2007.

After the company sent the order to Utah, agents reviewed the videos, "Max Hardcore: Pure Max 18," Max Hardcore: Extreme 12" and Extreme Associates' "Cocktails 5," and deemed them obscene. According to affidavits filed in court, the nature of the sexual acts displayed on the DVDs were extremely graphic, and federal officials said the movies "lack serious literary, artistic, political or scientific value."

"They pulled our postal records and found that we had shipped 670-plus packages to Utah in '06," Harb told XBIZ last June. "I scratched my head. I said, 'Doesn't that tell you that the people in Utah want it? Doesn’t that vindicate us?' They said 'No.'"

The Harbs, who are cousins, have said that they were selling the movies, but they do not produce them. They have also argued that the content does not contain any child pornography and is protected under the First Amendment.