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New Law Clamps Down on Paparazzi Targeting Kids of Celebrities LA Times

A measure signed into law this week should make it more difficult for paparazzi trying to take pictures of the children of public figures and celebrities in California, the Los Angeles Times reports.

"Gov. Jerry Brown on Tuesday signed the privacy measure, which will make it a misdemeanor to attempt to photograph or videotape a child in a harassing manner if the image is being taken because the child's parent is a celebrity or public official," the story reports. "The measure drew strong support from Hollywood celebrities. Actresses Jennifer Garner and Halle Berry testified before the Legislature that when they take their children out in public, they are harassed by paparazzi."

State Sen. Kevin de Leon, D-Los Angeles, who wrote the measure, said in a statement that the new law "will give children, no matter who their parent is, protection from harassers who go to extremes to turn a buck." He added: "Kids shouldn't be tabloid fodder nor the target of ongoing harassment."

The report notes: "The law, which takes effect Jan. 1, also increases the penalty for harassment, which now is as much as six months in jail and a fine of up to $1,000. The new penalty for harassment of children by photographers or video camera operators is as long as a year in jail and a maximum fine of $10,000."

Bill opponents the California Broadcasters Association and the California Newspaper Publishers Association had argued that the measure was too broad and that existing harassment measures were sufficient, the piece notes.