From: Fabrizio Evola [Email him]
Netflix is facing some rather intense scrutiny due to the release of the film “Cuties
” and it’s sexualization of young girls. Senators Mike Lee and Josh Hawley
have written letters
to the company demanding an explanation, and suggesting possible Justice Department action. Due to the film’s graphic nature, it likely fits into the definition of child exploitation under federal law (See 18 USC 110, Section 2251
), and there are a number of different options for the DOJ to pursue against the company.
I believe that the most appropriate, and effective, way to punish Netflix is to file a civil forfeiture action against them, pursuant to 18 USC 110, Section 2254
. A forfeiture action would allow the DOJ to seize profits, real property, and maybe even various personal property used to develop and distribute the movie.
I worked as a District Attorney for several years, and I handled most of the forfeiture cases for my office. They are pretty easy to prosecute. The standard of proof is less, and there a lot of presumptions in place that work in the favor of the government. Also, the owners of the property are often reluctant to file a claim to get their property returned. The risk of putting something incriminating in a pleading, and thereby waiving any Fifth Amendment privilege, was simply too high. The avoidance of criminal prosecution was of paramount importance. In most circumstances, I was able to get a default judgment because no party filed a claim.
If we are going to win the Culture War, we need to make life difficult—and unprofitable—for our political opponents (enemies?). Hollywood was brought to heel almost a century ago when the Hays Code
was imposed upon the industry. The public took advantage of scandals revolving around people like “Fatty” Arbuckle
to make these reforms happen. We need to do the same today if we want to neuter the power of mass media.