A Beaumont attorney, John Morgan, has filed a class action lawsuit in Orange County which has gained attention, against TEXXXAN.com and GoDaddy.com claiming his client’s were victims of the websites.

According to the petition, “This explicit website is dedicated to publishing intimate photos of young women, and also publishing private facts about these women, all of which are done without obtaining permission or authorization from the women who are the victims of this website.”

The petition also states,” The Defendants who own this website, or who contribute to its contents, or who subscribe to its contents, or who subscribe to this website, are fully aware that they do not have permission from many of the women victims to publish their photographs or their personal information.”

Morgan said he was surprised by the national media attention the case has gotten. Since the story broke, it has continued to escalate and has gone global as well. He also said he disagrees with the legal analysts voicing their opinion and about their claims of freedom of speech protects the website.

Some of the legal analysts have stated the website is protected by  47 USC 230, which states websites aren’t liable for third-party content. They added, the same law explicitly protects website users, and a recently enacted anti-SLAPP law in Texas which was designed to discourage anti-free speech lawsuits such as this one.

The case has been described as “weak” but Morgan said he will fight for the victims all the way to the supreme court if necessary. But, he has been busy conducting research on case laws and feels this a a very viable lawsuit which can certainly be won.

According to Morgan, “pornography implies consent” and has to have “some sort of redeeming social value.”

“Revenge Porn” is obscenity and does not have the consent of the people in the picture and has a purpose of hurting the victim and does not have any sort of redeeming value whatsoever.

During his research Morgan discovered a federal decision in the 9th circuit court of appeals in California, where a judge stated revenge porn has a remedy in the state courts. In addition, if proven to be obscenity under the Federal Communications Decency Act then it is not protected.

“By its’ nature it is illegal and criminal and therefore not protected by federal law,” Morgan said.

The lawsuit states they want a temporary injunction in addition to a permanent injunction. In addition, they are seeking the recovery of actual and punitive damages plus attorney fees. The site has since shut down much to the relief of the victims.

For one of the victims, Kelly Hinson, 27, of Orange, the posting of a sexually explicit picture on the website has turned her life upside down. She first found out about her picture on the website when after a long day was trying to sleep. Her phone rang continuously. She answered it  and a friend told her of the pictures and sent Hinson the link.

“I thought it was a joke at first,” Hinson said.

Hinson’s mother also saw the picture which left her horrified.

Hinson who was raped years ago, said she feels like it is happening all over again.

The photo on the site was taken with her boyfriend at the time. It was posted after he had died and therefore it could not have been him. But, she has no idea who actually posted the intimate photo.

For Hinson it was the hurtful comments about the picture including her “looks” and personal information in addition to the personal attacks which have deeply affected her. Hinson who is pregnant said some of the comments made were that she should “put a gun in her mouth” and abort her ” baby with a rusty coat hanger.”

With the posting of her personal information there has been threats made on the internet and on her phone with up to 30 messages per day.

But, the comments she has endured do not stop on the internet or her phone.

Recently she went to a restaurant where she was humiliated by the snickering and finger-pointing of some customers at a table. Just when she thought it could not be worse, she was also approached by a man at a store who claimed he had saved her picture for continued viewing.

“This has completely ruined my life,” Hinson said.

She says to the person who posted the picture, “Any angle you could hurt me, you did.”

Now, everywhere she goes and meets people, in the back of her mind she wonders if they know about the pictures on the website.

“We all make mistakes,” Hinson said.

But, she feels the person who posted the pictures went too far.

‘We are not bad people,” Hinson said of herself and the others victims. “We did not commit any crime.”

Hinson said she has tried to have the picture removed and file criminal charges, but she was unsuccessful.

Jillian Green, 23, of Orange, was also a victim of the website. But, her circumstances were different. Green who is a model had posed for the pictures with a photographer. They were artful modeling shots showing her topless, but were meant to show the contours of her body in an artistic way.

“I am not a victim as far as it being revenge porn,” she said. “But I am a victim of society and it’s not porn. People are just close minded to see a person nude for art purposes.”

Green said she thinks her photo was stolen from her photographers website and put on the other website which leaves her “disgusted” at the thought of her pictures being exploited in such a manner.

‘It’s a natural state. Basically, it’s just my anatomy,” she added. “I am not touching myself or anything like that.”

Green had hoped it would all disappear. But, six months later her father called her when someone approached him about the pictures. In addition to the original posting, there was a picture added which went too far.

According to Green, it was of Green with friends and family at the lake dressed in swimsuits. What pushed Green over the edge was her younger sister was  included in the picture.

“I didn’t want my sister on there,” Green said.

With her parents support, she contacted Morgan because she doesn’t want them to suffer repercussions or be bullied.

Morgan is unsure whether there are other victims in Southeast Texas. But, sure other women who did not consent to their photos being posted on the website.

For now he will seek justice in the case for his clients and to ensure the website stays shut down permanently.