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Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Publishing the Memoirs of Convicted Criminals Permitted

Some states have Son of Sam laws which prevent convicted criminals from publishing their memoirs for profit. New York State enacted such a law in 1977. However, in 1991 the Supreme Court struck down New York's law as a violation of the First Amendment in Simon & Schuster v. Crime Victims Board. Here is my illustration of this ruling.

State Supreme Courts struck down Son of Sam laws in California and Nevada as well, citing the Simon & Schuster case as precedent. New York State has since modified its Son of Sam law to make it constitutional (see Legislative Response to Simon & Schuster). However, I did not attempt to illustrate any subsequent changes to legislation.

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