Hustler challenges Ohio sex offender law

July 1, 2008 at 2:25 PM
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CINCINNATI, July 1 (UPI) -- The owner of a Hustler adult book store in Cincinnati says she's challenging an Ohio law that could label such retailers as sex offenders.

The woman, identified only as G.B. in a lawsuit filed U.S. District Court, claims Ohio's Adam Walsh Child Protection and Safety Act is unconstitutional because of its provisions requiring people convicted of selling obscene materials to register as sex offenders for 15 years, the Cincinnati Enquirer reported Tuesday. The store owner said the provision is an infringement of free speech because community standards for obscenity can change over time.

The woman's attorney, Lou Sirkin, took aim at Hamilton County, Ohio, prosecutors in the suit, saying, "G.B. fears facing obscenity charges due to the history of censorship and strict enforcement of obscenity laws in Hamilton County, which includes multiple criminal obscenity charges arising out of Hustler business ventures in Cincinnati."

The newspaper said Sirkin is a longtime lawyer for Hustler publisher Larry Flynt and has battled obscenity and other First Amendment issues often in Hamilton County, including the 1990 prosecution of the Contemporary Arts Center over a Robert Mapplethorpe exhibit some called obscene.

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