Judge Makes Key Ruling Over Isaacs' Sentencing
LOS ANGELES — A federal judge has ruled that Ira Isaacs, convicted last spring on federal obscenity charges, won't be subjected to a "vulnerable victim" sentencing adjustment in light of planned testimony that drugs were fed to performers during film shoots.
Federal prosecutors last month planned to introduce testimony from Veronica Jett and another former adult performer named April that they never would have taken part in several scat films if they had not been high after allegedly being fed drugs by Isaacs at the time of the filming such videos as the "Hollywood Scat Amateurs" series.
Prosecutors, with the introduction of performer testimony, have attempted to sway a judge to enhance Isaacs' sentencing two levels to seven years and three months by using the theory that "vulnerable victims" were exploited in the commission of federal offenses. Isaacs attorney, Roger Jon Diamond, has asked for a reduction in sentencing.
But U.S. District Judge George King said "drug addiction by itself does not appear sufficient to vitiate consent" and that the government could not prove whether the former porn stars were victims of the offenses or co-participants.
"If [Jett] and [April] consented, then as consenting adults who helped produce obscene materials, they are better characterized as co-participants in the offenses than as victims," King said.
King noted in his order that courts do have the authority to look beyond "the four corners of the charge" to defendants' underlying conduct in determining whether someone is a "vulnerable victim."
Diamond had argued that the Justice's Department shouldn't be able to convert an obscenity trial into "a totally different trial involving unfounded accusations against Mr. Isaacs." Both Jett and April did not perform in films used in Isaacs' conviction.
King has not yet scheduled a new sentencing hearing.
A sentencing hearing was called off last month after new evidence was introduced by prosecutors, including testimony from an LAPD officer that said Isaacs appeared on a KFI-AM talk radio show hosted by David Cruz, asking listeners towards the end of the show to visit his site, ScatMoviez.com, and buy videos.
The LAPD officer ordered and received through the U.S. mail four videos — "Euro Scat Girls," "'My Pony Lover," "Violet: Dog and Pig Fuckers" and "Hot Girl With Dogs" — that weren't part of the Isaacs obscenity trial.