Tuesday, July 26, 2011

ESA seeks $1.1 million in legal fees from California

As if it weren't embarrassing enough for California to lose its Supreme Court caseagainst a consortium of gaming industry trade groups, now the state might have to pay for the legal team that successfully argued the industry's case. The Entertainment Software Association today announced the filing of a reimbursement motion for $1.1 million legal fees it hopes to claim from California.
According to the ESA's motion, "California persisted in defending a law that plaintiffs warned the legislature was unconstitutional before it was passed; that was previously found to be unconstitutional by the district court and a unanimous panel of the Ninth Circuit; and that is similar to at least eight other laws invalidated as unconstitutional…"
This is nothing new for the ESA, which has previously seen its legal fees recouped after similar laws were overturned in IllinoisMichigan, and Minnesota. This wouldn't even be the first time California has lined the trade group's pockets over this particular law, as it was ordered to pay $280,000 to the ESA in 2008 after the same measure was ruled unconstitutional by a lower court.
Drafted by state senator Leland Yee and signed by then-governor Arnold Schwarzenegger in 2005, the law would have criminalized the sale of violent games to minors. It also would have required a two-inch-by-two-inch sticker with a solid white "18" outlined in black to appear on the front cover of such games.

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