Cuomo signs ‘revenge porn’ bill into law

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ALBANY, N.Y. (WROC) — Gov. Andrew Cuomo signed a new law Tuesday that criminalizes the publication of “revenge porn” in New York state.

“Revenge porn” is considered the non-consensual sharing or publican of an intimate image. This new law subjects abusers to criminal penalties of up to one year in prison and also empowers victims to seek a court order to remove the images online.

“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 press release.. “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.” 

According to the governor’s office, this legislation:

  • Defines “revenge porn” as the criminal act of unlawful dissemination or publication of an intimate image when done with the intent to cause harm to the emotional, financial, or physical welfare of another person and when the image was taken with a reasonable expectation that the image would remain private.
  • Establishes the act of unlawful dissemination or publication of an intimate image as a Class A misdemeanor.
  • Amends the Civil Rights Law to allow victims of “revenge porn” to seek civil recourse for the damages.

“As part of our Women’s Justice Agenda, we are focused on changing a culture that enables sexism and violence against women,” said Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul in a press release.. “This legislation ensures New Yorkers are not victims of nonconsensual release of intimate images, empowering them to take action to remove images from the Internet and subject abusers to jail time. This is another important step in our overall goals to achieve true social, economic, racial, and gender justice once and for all.”

The governor’s office saws this new law is a “key achievement” in Cuomo’s 2019 Women’s Justice Agenda.

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