Isaacs Obscenity Trial Begins in 3 Weeks
LOS ANGELES — The trial of fetish filmmaker Ira Isaacs, who faces a 10-count federal indictment of obscenity charges, gets underway three weeks from today.
"We think from start to finish it will take five days," Isaacs told XBIZ on Tuesday. "But it could depend on the number of videos the government will show to jurors."
In pretrial rulings, U.S. Judge George King has ruled that federal prosecutors must play any of 17 movies charged in the indictment "as a whole."
"Meaning that they can't just play a few minutes of the videos; prosecutors would force jurors to watch the whole movie," Isaacs said. "If they choose to play all 17 videos, they are going to piss off everybody. But I think they'll play three of them."
Isaacs has pleaded not guilty to 10 felony obscenity counts for videos allegedly distributed in 2007 and 2011.
According to the federal complaint, Isaacs, through his Stolen Car Films and LA Media companies, distributed by mail "Hollywood Scat Amateurs No. 7," "Hollywood Scat Amateurs No. 10," "Hollywood Scat Amateurs No. 38," "Trailers" and "Japanese Doggie 3 Way" — all deemed "obscene matter."
The long-running case was put on hold in 2010 after federal appellate Judge Alex Kozinski, a visiting judge at the district court, recused himself after it was revealed that he used a website to distribute sexually explicit photos and videos.
Later, the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals decided that Kozinski exercised “sound discretion” in declaring a mistrial in the Isaacs case because of “extraordinary circumstances.”
But federal prosecutors continued on with the case against Isaacs and earlier this year made a superseding indictment to add five more counts to the original five from 2007.
The jury trial, which will be held at U.S. District Court in Los Angeles, will include no expert witnesses for the defense. It is scheduled to begin Feb. 28; however that could change pending a status hearing slated for Monday.
Isaacs said he hopes that there will be no more delays in the government's case against him.
"I'm feeling really good about the case," he said. "After five years of this, I just want to move along in life."