Sex Offender Law Reformers Sue Websites That Post Personal Details, Demand Cash to Remove

Categories: Court, Crime-iny
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California Reform Sex Offender Laws (RSOL), which has been part of lawsuits against the County of Orange and Orange County cities over controversial laws that ban registered sex offenders from public parks, now has a new target. A lawsuit filed by RSOL in federal court Wednesday challenges websites that identify people as sex offenders, include their names, photos, home addresses and personal information, and demand up to $500 to have individual listings removed from the sites. "It is time to stop the extortion of more than 750,000 individuals in this country," explains Janice Bellucci, the nonprofit's president.

Bellucci, a Santa Maria attorney, maintains the people running such websites as Offendex, Online Detective and SORarchives are engaged in racketeering and violating other state and federal laws.

"We've heard so many stories of people who have completed their registration period and yet are unable to move on with their lives," states Brenda Jones, the RSOL executive director, in a press release. "The only way they can be free is to submit to the extortion of profiteers like Offendex and that is simply appalling."

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The suit was filed on behalf of 10 people who reside in California, Washington, Oregon, Kentucky or Tennessee), but not all have been previously convicted of sex-related offenses as the plaintiffs include one wife and one mother who have never been convicted of crimes.

The complaint was filed in the U.S. District Court in Los Angeles. Women Against Registry and Families Against the Registry joined RSOL in providing financial and administrative support.

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5 comments
W.C.
W.C.

Wow!! When did John Walsh make THAT surprisingly honest admission?

suetiggers
suetiggers

Even the man who helped start it all has seen the light:  "The system is broken. It’s overwhelmed and I think the public is starting to realize that.You can’t paint sex offenders with a broad brush.'(John Walsh, father of Adam Walsh)

vicki.henry
vicki.henry

You forgot this part:

“For-profit companies that provide false information about a former offender cause collateral damage to the families of offenders,” stated Vicki Henry, Director of Women Against Registry. “The additional financial burdens placed on the families by the companies that require a fee for removal from their website and the misinterpretation of the individual significantly limit the employment opportunities of a former offender.”

voiceofreason
voiceofreason

I thought that this whole Sex Offender Web Site deal was a matter of public safety and in the hands of the justice system. How can a private entity be making a profit off of this? How can this be legal? Not a fan of sex offenders, but this is messed up!

Parry_Hotter
Parry_Hotter

What is this, then? Pushback from the dreaded Registered Sex Offenders? What happened to the days when every talent-less politician and shady business man could profit politically and financially from those so labeled, without fear of protest or consequence?  Those, many with crimes so very long ago and some really not all that terrible, yet deemed worthy only of putting their heads down in shame and taking the continued punishment and exploitation until the day they die.

There are a ton of people with this label in California, and the US (750,000). Many of them for things that you and I have done but never were caught for.

It looks like a new dawn has broken in "perv" country.  This lawyer woman has got a pair, that I'll say! Speaking up for what is right at the expense of popular! Now there's a concept! Hallelujah!

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