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Illinois Senate committee passes revenge porn bill

February 19, 2014
Revenge Porn

By Jim Hagerty
Staff Writer

Angry ex-spouses, boyfriends and girlfriends who post sexual images of their former lovers online without permission could soon face stiff criminal penalties, according to a bill that passed out of an Illinois Senate committee Wednesday, Feb. 19.

The bill makes it a felony to post what is known as revenge porn, explicit images of another person, without their consent.

Sponsored by Illinois Sen. Michael Hastings, D-Orland Hills, the bill aims to eliminate embarrassment and emotional harm caused by revenge porn postings. In extreme cases, victims have committed suicide, Hastings said.

Hastings said legislation is needed, as none exists to protect victims from having details of their private sexual relationships made public.

Under the bill, offenders could spend up to three years in prison and pay fines of up to $25,000 if convicted. It would also be illegal to charge a fee to have an inappropriate picture or video removed from a website.

So far, only New Jersey and California have laws on the books prohibiting revenge porn. Bills in 13 states are pending.

Illinois’ bill now heads to the Senate.

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