California pays out $282k to cover ESA legal fees

The payout is to be made following the failed attempt to defend unconstitutional law on appeal

California has reimbursed the ESA USD 282,794 for legal fees incurred by the industry organisation during the state's failed attempted to defend an unconstitutional law that regulated the sale of computer and videogames.

California's Governor, Arnold Schwarzenegger, signed the bill into law in 2005, which was to see anyone selling violent videogames to minors facing a USD 1000 fine. Since it was overturned last year Governor Schwarzenegger has committed himself into seeing it reinstated.

"California deserves more from its legislators than pursuing flawed legislation. State employees are facing pay cuts. California's services are being scaled back. And, anxiety is rising in Sacramento to find funds," said Michael D Gallagher, CEO of the ESA.

"Rather than tackling real problems affecting Californians, they chose to waste time, money and state resources. It is shameful that legislators pursued personal agendas in spite of the facts."

The state's attempt to regulate videogame sales was overturned on August 6, 2007, by a judge who ruled that games are protected by the US Constitution's First Amendment and found there was no evidence that playing violent games results in real world violence.

"Caregivers are not well-served by court battles and legal fees. Rather, they would have been far better off if state officials worked together with our industry to raise awareness about videogame ratings and the parental controls available on all new game consoles - both of which help ensure that the games children play are parent-approved," Gallagher added.

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