New York Times covers creative use of Google Trends evidence in obscenity case

Lawrence Walters Comments on Legal Issues in the:

the new york times
“Lawrence Walters, a Florida lawyer who is an expert in obscenity law, said that there was nothing inherently illegal about cam shows, as long as the models were over 18. There is another risk. ‘There’s a perception that you can be a stealth webcam model,’ he says. ‘That’s not always the case.’” M. Richtel, , Intimacy on the Web, With a Crowd, New York Times (September 21, 2013)
“Lawrence Walters, a First Amendment lawyer who has sued Sheriff Judd and his office a number of times, said: “That is the misuse of the criminal justice system. You don’t bring felony charges against a 12-year-old to raise awareness of a social issue, especially if there is not a valid basis for those charges.” [Discussing the constitutional concerns with filing unwarranted cyber-bullying charges after a tragic teen suicide]” L. Alvarez, Charges Dropped in Cyberbullying Death, but Sheriff Isn’t Backing Down, New York Times (Nov. 21, 2013)
“Lawrence Walters, a lawyer who specializes in online gambling, said pay-per-head sites operate in a gray area because of those types of meetings and the required third-party element that is inherent in their operations. It is possible that operators of the sites could be prosecuted by United States officials for facilitating illegal sports betting in this country, but with most of the sites based in Costa Rica and other Central American countries where gambling is legal, extradition would be unlikely, he said.” S. Borden, Neighborhood Bookies Putting Lines Online, New York Times (March 29, 2012)
Some advocates for legalizing online poker pointed to the complaint as another reason that the activity should be federally licensed and regulated. “This is a system that has been forced into place by the failure of the U.S. to regulate online gambling,” said Lawrence Walters, a Florida lawyer who specializes in gambling and First Amendment law, arguing that players had to send money to risky overseas accounts. “The prohibitionists have gotten their way so far.” [Discussing issues allegations of misuse of player funds by online poker sites] Poker Web Site Cheated Users, U.S. Suit Says
We are asking a federal judge to put a stop to this madness, Mr. Walters said. We want to try to stop a rogue sheriff who is abusing his authority as a law enforcement officer to punish a vocal atheist in town for her viewpoint and political beliefs. L. Alvarez, Florida Suit Says Arrests are Retaliation for Atheism, New York Times (June 24, 2011) [discussing a suit filed against Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd, for violating the separation of Church and State]
“Lawrence Walters, a lawyer who represents online gambling operations, though not those involved in these cases, said the indictment might raise an even more fundamental question: Is online poker actually illegal? “This appears to be a precedent-setting case,” Mr. Walters said. “It will be the first time the Department of Justice takes on the looming question of whether federal law prohibits online poker.” –Lawrence Walters offers insight into the federal crackdown on Internet Poker sites
“[T]he defense lawyer, Lawrence Walters, is arguing that the evidence is sufficient to demonstrate that interest in the sexual subjects exceeds that of more mainstream topics — and that by extension, the sexual material distributed by his client is not outside the norm.” –New York Times covers creative use of Google Trends evidence in obscenity case June 24, 2008 [discussing the use of google trends data in the Clinton Raymond McCowen obscenity case]

“Lawrence G. Walters, a Florida lawyer who is part of the defense team for Ms. Fletcher, argued in a court pleading that the stories had scientific value…” — A Prosecution Tests the Definition of Obscenity, Sept. 28, 2007 [discussing the government’s case against Karen Fletcher, prosecuted for writing violent and sexually charged stories]

“Lawrence G. Walters of Altamonte Springs, Fla., said the development was disconcerting because the prevailing wisdom had been that investment in a company that is legal and licensed in its jurisdiction was not grounds for prosecution. ‘It would be the first time that that kind of liability has been imposed,’ Mr. Walters said.” — Gambling Subpoenas on Wall Street, January 22, 2007 [discussing the issuance of subpoenas to Wall Street banks by the Justice Department]

“‘This is a shot across the bow,’ said Lawrence G. Walters, a Florida lawyer who specializes in Internet gambling law. ‘They’re letting the industry know, ‘We’re about to come after you.'” — Arrest Made in Crackdown on Internet Betting, July 18, 2006 [discussing the arrest of David Carruthers in the first major crackdown against offshore gambling by federal authorities]

“The government has floated these legal theories without having to prove anything,’ said Lawrence G. Walters, a Florida lawyer who specializes in Internet gambling law. ‘But they’ve achieved their end result: scaring the players and the industry.'” — Companies Aiding Internet Gambling Feel U.S. Pressure, March 15, 2004 [referencing federal investigations into media advertising of online gambling businesses]

“‘The chilling effect is working,’ said Lawrence G. Walters, A lawyer who represents American media companies that accept advertising on behalf of offshore casinos. He said that American companies ‘are buckling under pressure and threats of prosecution and litigation.'” — Electronic Arts to Stop Advertising for Online Casinos on Its Web Site, June 12, 2004 [discussing corporate decisions to stop advertising for online gambling interests]

“‘Nobody takes them seriously when they say this is a serious crime,” [Walters] said of the government and anti-gambling laws.’ ‘But there is stuff still on the books, and somebody could go down heavily if government decides to turn its attention to them.'” — Wall St. Bets on Gambling on the Web, December 25, 2005 [discussing the popularity of online gambling in the stock market]

“Lawrence Walters says the suit could test the law’s constitutionality.” — Sticker Shock: Should There Be a Law?, August 11, 2000 [referencing the arrest of Walters’ client for an ‘obscene’ bumper sticker, and the eventual First Amendment claims against the police department after dismissal of the criminal case]

“Lawrence G. Walters, a lawyer who represents offshore casinos and their American partners, said the industry had been waiting for a test case and was eager to see how the Casino City case turned out. He said the stakes were significant, particularly for the offshore casinos, which do about half their business with American consumers.” — Technology; Lawsuit Claims Free Speech for Online Casino Ads, August 23, 2004

“Lawrence Walters, a lawyer who specializes in Internet gambling law, said prosecutors faced serious jurisdictional questions. One central question is whether any illegal activity is taking place on American soil; the bettors, he said, are not breaking the law, because placing a wager is legal.” — The Gambling is Virtual; the Money is Real, July 25, 2006 [discussing the prosecution against for racketeering]

“Mr. Walters said he did not believe that states had the jurisdiction to regulate Internet gambling, which involves transactions that cross state and national borders.” — Arrest of Second Major Online Gambling Figure is a First for State Officials, September 8, 2006 [commenting on the arrest of Peter Dicks, chairman of, on state level online gambling charges]

“‘This is a strategy of intimidating anybody who is in the chain of commerce,’ said Lawrence Walters, a lawyer who works with offshore Internet casinos, as well as software companies that do business with the casinos.” — U.S. Steps Up Push Against Online Casinos By Seizing Cash, September 8, 2006 [commenting on the arrest of Peter Dicks, chairman of, on state level online gambling charges]