French Court to Decide Whether Sex Toys Are Porn

Feb 8, 2012 8:30 AM PST

PARIS — A French court will decide if a sex toy shop operator violated porn laws by selling his products within 200 yards of a school.

Two Christian groups — the National Confederation of Catholic Family Associations (CNAFC) and the CLER Love and Family Association filed complaints against the shop manager Nicolas Busnel, charging that his store was too close to a school.

Busnel went on trial today and claimed that his merchandise, that includes dildos and vibrators, are erotic but not porn.

"There are as many definitions of pornography as there are people," said his lawyer, Richard Malka.

Busnel maintained that limiting sex toy shops to areas outside of 200 yards of educational institutions would mean the only places they could be sold would be "cemeteries, parks and on train tracks."

But a lawyer for the plaintiffs, Henri de Beauregard said there was little doubt the shop’s products were porn.

"You can say that a sex shop is a 'love shop,' that a dildo is a 'sex toy'... but these are just words," he said. "The simple truth is that we have here a sex shop that sells pornography."

If convicted, Busnel faces two years in prison and a $40,000 fine.

Malka made a motion for the case to be dismissed as unconstitutional, but was rejected by the court.

Further testimony from witnesses including Busnel and a sexologist, was to be heard later by the court.

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