Revenge-Porn Ban Becomes Law in New York

(CN) – Authorizing courts to remove intimate images of people posted without their content, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo signed into law Tuesday a bill that criminalizes revenge porn.

Queens Assemblyman Edward Braunstein, a Bayside Democrat who wrote the legislation, noted in a statement that the option in the law for victims to obtain an injunction is the first of its kind in the country.

Forty-six states plus the District of Columbia and one territory now have laws against nonconsensual pornography, according to data from the nonprofit Cyber Civil Rights Initiative.

New York’s bill on “nonconsensual pornography,” as it is otherwise known, passed the state Assembly and the newly Democratic Senate in February.

It’s part of the governor’s 2019 Women’s Justice Agenda, which includes proposals to protect reproductive rights, reduce maternal mortality, and protect the rights of rape and domestic violence survivors in the state, among other plans to establish gender equity.

“Our laws have not kept pace with technology and how abusers can use it to harass, intimidate and humiliate intimate partners,” Cuomo said in a statement Tuesday. “By criminalizing the publication of revenge porn, we are empowering victims of this heinous act to take action against their abusers and showing them a path to justice.”

The new law defines the act as a Class A misdemeanor and amends the Civil Rights Law to let victims sue for damages.

“As part of our Women’s Justice Agenda, we are focused on changing a culture that enables sexism and violence against women,” Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul said in a statement Tuesday.

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