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John Stagliano’s Attorneys Ask for a Dismissal of Charges

In something that sounds like it would have been the Larry Waters defense in the Ray Guhn case, XBIZ, www.xbiz.com is reporting that attorneys for John Stagliano have filed another motion to dismiss obscenity indictments against Stagliano and his companies.

They’re claiming that charges should be dismissed because contemporary community standards are outdated and that the Miller requirement’s “as a whole” rule cannot be met for online content.

According to the story, Stagliano’s counsel Robert Corn-Revere and Paul Cambria have also said that prohibitions of transporting adult content, whether online or through common carrier, is an unconstitutional burden for the exercise of free speech.

Stagliano, along with Evil Angel Productions and John Stagliano Inc. were charged with seven federal counts of operating “an obscenity distribution business and related offenses in April. The charges stem from the mail and Internet distribution of two movies in the Washington, D.C., area.

The movies named in the indictment are “Milk Nymphos,” directed by Jay Sin; “Storm Squirters 2,” directed by Joey Silvera; and a trailer from Belladonna’s “Fetish Fanatic 5.”

In filing for dismissal, Corn-Revere and Cambria — said that the 1st Amendment prohibits “prosecution of Evil Angel Productions for use of an interactive computer service to distribute online communications because, unlike many offline publishers, Internet publishers cannot control the geographic reach of their communications.”

According to the XBIZ story, Stagliano’s counsel also said that 18 U.S.C. § 1465 and 47 U.S.C. § 223(d) are impermissibly overbroad because they employ Miller’s community standard element in the determination of whether certain Internet communications that are not geographically controlled are obscene.

Citing the Miller Test, they also said that the government’s stance as “taken as a whole” is unconstitutionally vague with respect to online communications.

The motion goes on to say, “The government describes the charged trailer as simply one of thousands of whole matters or works available for viewing on the defendant’s website, including a vast array of movies, trailers and other products that may be purchased or downloaded for free. Common sense dictates that the movie trailer is the whole matter, not the entire Evil Angel website.”

Stagliano’s counsel went on to say that prohibitions of transporting adult content, regardless of means of transmission, is unconstitutional relative to free speech and that Evil Angel maintains that the 1st Amendment and the Due Process Clause protect defendant’s right to distribute obscene material to adults for viewing and use in private. They also cited Lawrence vs. Texas [which struck down sodomy laws], and the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeal’s more recent decision in ReliableConsultants Inc. vs. Earle, regarding the sale of sex toys.

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