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Thursday, July 24, 2008
(202) 514-2007
TDD (202) 514-1888

Federal Grand Jury Charges California Man with Obscenity Violations

WASHINGTON – A California man was charged yesterday by a federal grand jury in San Jose, Calif., with mailing obscene materials and related offenses, Acting Assistant Attorney General of the Criminal Division Matthew Friedrich announced today.

According to the indictment, Robert Alan Thomas, 52, of Malpitas, Calif., was charged with three counts of mailing obscene matters and one count of engaging in the business of selling or transferring obscene matters. If convicted, Thomas faces a maximum penalty of five years in prison on each of the counts. In a separate allegation, the government is seeking the forfeiture of various assets belonging to Thomas, including certain obscene materials and all property traceable to the proceeds of the alleged offenses or used to commit the offenses.

According to the indictment, Thomas, who does business under the names Amateur Action, Amateur Action BBS (Bulletin Board System), and AABBS and who uses the Web site to conduct his business, is charged with using the mails to distribute various obscene films in DVD format in December 2006. The indictment states that the films in question depict bestiality and other sexually explicit content.

An indictment is a formal charging document notifying the defendant of his charges. All persons charged in an indictment are presumed innocent until proven guilty.

The case is being prosecuted by Trial Attorney Matthew Buzzelli of the Criminal Division’s Obscenity Prosecution Task Force.