FSC Responds to DOJ Call for 2257 Comments

Apr 26, 2012 12:15 PM PST

CANOGA PARK, Calif. — The Free Speech Coalition this week responded to a call by the Justice Department for comments on burdens associated with 18  U.S.C. § 2257.

“Of course we hope that our comments and the comments of others will be taken in to consideration, but history suggests otherwise,” FSC Executive Director Diane Duke said. “That is why FSC was compelled to file suit against the federal government on the issue of 2257 and 2257A. Hopefully our recent win will bring us closer to resolution."

Duke was referring to last week's victory at the 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, where the court sided with the adult entertainment trade group and 13 other plaintiffs over 2257 challenges.

A 3rd Circuit panel ruled that it would vacate a lower court ruling that the FSC shouldn't be afforded the opportunity to conduct discovery and develop a record relative to whether 2257 is narrowly tailored.

The court also said it would toss an earlier order dismissing claims for a restraining order over 2257 due to alleged 1st and 4th Amendment challenges over free speech and unreasonable searches and seizures.

The court also said it would vacate an earlier decision to deny the FSC's leave to amend its 4th Amendment complaint.

But the court affirmed the district court’s order  in all other respects and remanded the case for further proceedings "consistent with the foregoing opinion." The suit now continues at U.S. District Court.

Attorneys J. Michael Murray and Lorraine Baumgardner represent the FSC and other plaintiffs in the current case filed against the Justice Department.

The suit, if successful, would strike down the current regulations, which place considerable burdens on producers to be in compliance, and which also presents a danger to the privacy rights of adult performers.

Duke said she gave "special thanks to Reed Lee, Lorraine Baumgardner, Michael Murray and Jeffrey Douglas for their excellent work in drafting our statement" to the Justice Department.

The FSC's letter details objections to the burdens placed on primary and secondary producers by 2257 and 2257a regulations, which govern age verification record-keeping for adult content producers.

FSC has opposed 2257 regulations since 2005, when the regulations were enacted, and continues to voice opposition on behalf of adult industry producers, Duke said.

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