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Mar 31,2009
Judge: Teens can't be charged for photos
by UPI

TUNKHANNOCK, Pa. -- A judge says three teenage girls in Tunkhannock, Pa., cannot be charged for appearing seminude in photos found on cell phones.

U.S. District Judge James M. Munley Monday granted a request by the American Civil Liberties Union to stop the Wyoming County District Attorney's Office from filing felony charges against the girls, The Times-Tribune newspaper in Scranton, Pa., reported.

The girls were among about 20 teenagers threatened with child pornography charges after Tunkhannock Area School District officials found nude or seminude photographs on cell phones seized last year from students, The Times-Tribune reported Tuesday.

The district attorney's office said the teens could avoid prosecution if they participated in an educational program. The three girls represented by the ACLU refused, in part, because they and their parents said they believed the photographs in which the girls appeared weren't pornographic and should be protected under the First Amendment.

One of the photos shows two of the plaintiffs from the waist up, both wearing bras. The second photo shows the third girl wearing only a towel, with her breasts exposed, The Times-Tribune reported.

Copyright © 2009, by United Press International. All Rights Reserved.

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