Police yesterday seized 32 adult DVDs packaged incorrectly for their classification from a business at a remote Aboriginal community on the east coast of Arnhem Land.
A 54-year-old man will be summonsed for offences including selling unclassified films and possessing unclassified films for the purpose of sale or exhibition.
“We’re going to ban the possession of X-rated p-rnography in the proscribed areas and we’re going to check all publicly funded computers for evidence of the storage of pornography,” the Prime Minister declared when he announced the Commonwealth’s intervention in the Northern Territory last month.
While it is legal to possess X-rated material in all states, it can only can only legally be sold in the ACT and NT. Prohibition, of course, has led to a flourishing illegal trade in X-rated material in the states.
Less than half of one per cent, of all X-rated films legally mailed from the ACT, went to NT postcodes, CEO of the adult industry peak body the Eros Association Fiona Patten has said.
“The adult retail industry’s intelligence on this issue shows that legal and classified X-rated films are very thin on the ground in communities and that the majority of s-xual media ending up in these places is coming from two main sources,” Patten says.
“Our concern is that the material finding its way into some of these communities is not X non violent e-otica but films that would be refused classification. There are a number of traders operating illegally in the NT using the Darwin GPO as a front.”
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“They advertise in the NT Yellow pages, online and I believe in local newspapers. Their catalogues are full of really offensive material and they often sell these films for as little as $5 if you buy 20.”
The second source is Austar’s two R-rated satellite delivered Adults Only channels.
“We have been writing to the federal and NT governments for over four years with this information and they ignored us,” Patten says. “Now they are shooting the messenger”.
The Little Children Are Sacred report found that the Austar Pay TV service was a source of s-xually explicit material on communities.
“Many of the reports stated that p-rn was playing all day long in some communities and it is far more likely that this is coming in through a satellite feed than it would be the result of someone getting up every 60 minutes and putting a new DVD in the player”, Patten says.
Eros says the government has ignored the first official recommendation (87a) on p-rnography from the Report which requested that “an education campaign be conducted to inform communities of: (a) the meaning of and rationale for film and television show classifications.”
“Most of the people on aboriginal communities would have no idea at all of the fact that it is illegal to show a minor an X or R-rated film or a restricted publication or indeed what the differences between these classifications are,” Patten says.
“The Office of Film and Literature Classification spends over $1million a year on a ‘Community Liaison Officer’ who is supposed to do this work but he has never set foot inside an Aboriginal community in the NT.”