Isaacs Could Face Obscenity Trial as Early as October

Jul 16, 2010 11:00 AM PST
LOS ANGELES — The federal obscenity case against Ira Isaacs is moving forward.

U.S. District Judge George King has calendared an Aug. 2 trial setting and status conference for Isaacs, who faces multiple obscenity-related counts in connection with movies his company distributed through the mail.

King has ordered Isaacs and his attorney, Roger Jon Diamond, to appear at the pretrial proceeding in his chambers.

Diamond told XBIZ that trial in the case could begin in 70 days after the August proceeding, or as early as October.

Isaacs, who owns Stolen Cars Films and LA Media, was targeted by federal prosecutors over the distribution of “Gang Bang Horse — ‘Pony Sex Game,’” “Mako’s First Time Scat,” “Hollywood Scat Amateurs No. 7” and “BAE 20.”

Diamond earlier this year asked the U.S. Supreme Court to review Isaacs' case. The Justice Department's Obscenity Prosecution Task Force attorneys agreed at the time to waive pretrial proceedings relative to his retrial while the highest court in the country decides whether to take up the case.

Isaacs' obscenity case was put on hold last year after federal Judge Alex Kozinski recused himself after it was revealed that he used a website to distribute sexually explicit photos and videos.

Diamond contended that Isaacs, who is free on bond, shouldn’t be retried because there was no manifest necessity for the declaration of the mistrial, which was declared without Isaacs' consent, and that it would amount to double jeopardy, a procedural defense that forbids a defendant from being tried twice for the same crime on the same set of facts.

“My argument has been that Kozinski prematurely called a mistrial, when they could have put in a new judge midway through the proceedings,” Diamond told XBIZ earlier this year.

The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals decided Kozinski’s recusal was proper and that Kozinski exercised “sound discretion” in declaring a mistrial because of “extraordinary circumstances.”

"Ira had the right to have his trial concluded," Diamond said. "He has a right not to stand trial a second time."

But the U.S. Supreme Court hasn't taken up the case.

On Friday, Diamond said that he is confident that Isaacs would be found not guilty when the case goes to trial again. Diamond estimated it would take one week to complete the case in federal court.

"I think we have a very good position, and I think Ira will do a good job on the stand," he said.

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