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Porn Producers Say Unprotected Sex Is Free Speech Right

Photographer: Chris Ratcliffe/Bloomberg

Los Angeles County voters in November approved the measure, the Safer Sex in the Adult Film Industry Act, which seeks to minimize the spread of sexually transmitted diseases through the making of porn movies. Close

Los Angeles County voters in November approved the measure, the Safer Sex in the Adult... Read More

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Photographer: Chris Ratcliffe/Bloomberg

Los Angeles County voters in November approved the measure, the Safer Sex in the Adult Film Industry Act, which seeks to minimize the spread of sexually transmitted diseases through the making of porn movies.

Pornographic movie makers told a judge that a Los Angeles County voter-approved measure requiring adult-film actors to wear condoms violates their constitutional right to free speech.

“It dictates the content of a movie,” Paul Cambria, a lawyer representing Vivid Entertainment LLC, Califa Production Inc. and two porn actors who are fighting implementation of the measure, said at a hearing yesterday in federal court in Los Angeles. “The statute doesn’t allow a producer to portray conduct that is lawful.”

Los Angeles County voters in November approved the measure, the Safer Sex in the Adult Film Industry Act, which seeks to minimize the spread of sexually transmitted diseases through the making of porn movies. The producers asked U.S. District Judge Dean Pregerson to halt enforcement of the measure until the lawsuit over its constitutionality has been resolved.

Cambria, in response to a question from the judge, said the measure would make it impossible, for example, to make an adult movie in which a wife, who can’t get pregnant with her husband, has sex with all the men on her husband’s bowling team in order to get pregnant.

“The government should not dictate the way in which someone conveys lawful speech,” Cambria said.

Samantha Azulay, a lawyer for the Aids Healthcare Foundation, which is defending the case, said the producers have failed to show how they would be irreparably harmed by the measure and that any setbacks they suffer would be outweighed by the possibility someone getting a disease from making a porn movie.

Pregerson didn’t rule on the request for a preliminary injunction. The judge questioned how the intent of the law would be fulfilled if its only effect is to shift production of adult movies outside Los Angeles County.

The adult-film industry has said it employs 10,000 people in California and adds more than $1 billion to the local economy.

The case is Vivid Entertainment LLC v. Fielding, 13-cv-00190, U.S. District Court, Central District of California (Los Angeles).

To contact the reporter on this story: Edvard Pettersson in the Los Angeles federal courthouse at +1- epettersson@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Michael Hytha at mhytha@bloomberg.net.

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