Legislation to combat revenge porn signed by Calif. governor

SACRAMENTO, Calif. — State Sen. Anthony Cannella, R-Ceres, said his bill criminalizing revenge porn, was signed into law by Governor Brown. As the bill contained an urgency clause, it goes into effect immediately.

Under SB 255, anyone convicted of illegally distributing private images with the intent to harass or annoy will face six months in jail and/or a $1,000 fine.

“I want to thank Governor Brown for recognizing that this bill was needed. Until now, there was no tool for law enforcement to protect victims,” Cannella said in a statement. “Too many have had their lives upended because of an action of another that they trusted.”

Revenge porn often begins when relationships end. But what were once private photos taken with consent can later be shared with others, and then posted online at multiple sites without the subject’s knowledge or consent. Some websites even specialize in posting such materials, and charge the subjects unreasonable fees to take down the illicit photos.

“I want to thank Senator Cannella for his leadership in getting this bill signed into law,” said victims’ rights advocate Dr. Charlotte Laws, whose daughter was a victim of revenge porn. “I am thrilled to see California taking a leadership role in protecting victims of revenge porn.”

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