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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 119634 Find in a Library
Title: Criminal Antiprofit Laws: Some Thoughts in Favor of Their Constitutionality
Journal: California Law Review  Volume:76  Issue:6  Dated:(December 1988)  Pages:1353-1375
Author(s): S S Okuda
Date Published: 1988
Page Count: 23
Type: Legislation/Policy Analysis
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: The constitutionality of California's criminal antiprofit statute is analyzed, particularly in terms of its ability to withstand First Amendment challenges.
Abstract: The California statute places in a constructive trust the proceeds received by individuals from the sale of the "story" of a felony for which they have been convicted; "story" means a depiction, portrayal, or re-enactment of the felony. The statute provides for compensating victims out of the trust for physical, mental, or emotional injuries, or for pecuniary losses resulting from the convicted felon's crime. The analysis of California's statute in relation to the First Amendment concludes that California has been sensitive to both victim and criminal defendant needs. The statute provides victims with a separate cause of action for recovering profits unjustly earned at their expense, while allowing criminals to use a portion of these profits for their defense, fines, and court-imposed restitution. Further, the statute prevents criminals' unjust enrichment without infringing on their constitutional interests in speech and expression. Problems in the statute's application and enforcement are noted, including the propriety of applying the statute only to persons convicted of violent crimes, the statute's extension to include profits earned by white collar criminals, and the statute's impact on California's entertainment industry. 138 references.
Main Term(s): Rights of the accused
Index Term(s): California; Criminal law; Victim compensation
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