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ACSOLGeneral NewsJanice's Journal

Janice’s Journal: It’s Over, But It’s Not Over

It’s over, but it’s not over.  What do I mean?  The hearing for the Preliminary Injunction requested in the International Megan’s Law (IML) case is over.  However, our challenge to the IML case is not over.  In fact, it has just begun.

It is always difficult to argue a motion in federal court.  No matter how well you prepare, the judge can and does ask questions for which you are not quite ready.  For example, in this week’s hearing the judge asked a question about the use of a passport.  It’s only used when one enters a foreign country, right?  Wrong!  Passports are used continuously during a trip overseas – starting with entry, but also when you rent a car, check into a hotel, change money, etc.

The judge also asked why the addition of a “conspicuous, unique identifier” to a passport identified an individual as someone who has engaged in, or is likely to engage in, child sex trafficking and/or child sex tourism.  It is because of the title of the law, the findings in the bill that became the law and statements made by the bill’s author on the floor of Congress and elsewhere.

Some federal judges do not like to tip their hand, that is, to expose their feelings and/or beliefs during a hearing.  And perhaps that is what happened this week.  However, if the judge’s  questions did reflect her feelings and/or beliefs, I am not optimistic about the outcome.  The judge has taken under submission the Motion for Preliminary Injunction, the same action she took with regard to the first two motions she heard the same morning.  She will issue her decision when she is ready to do so and there is no deadline for her decision.

While we await the judge’s decision, we will not remain idle.  Instead, we will begin the discovery process in order to reveal the inner workings of Operation Angel Watch.  For example, how many notices have been sent to foreign countries regarding individuals who are no longer required to register?  The government admitted in court this week that they made one mistake when they sent such a notice to a foreign country regarding John Doe #3.  It’s easy to believe that if the government made one mistake, they’ve made many more.

The one federal government mistake we need to prevent is the addition of a Scarlet letter to even one passport belonging to a U.S. citizen.  We will have many more opportunities during the next few months to do so including when the government issues draft regulations explaining what the Scarlet letter will look like and how it will be applied to passports.

So stay tuned.  We may or may not have lost one battle due to this week’s hearing.  We have many more battles to come.  The IML war is far from over.  In fact, it has just begun.

Read all of Janice’s Journal

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I got in trouble in 1998 when I was 21 years old for statutory rape. I did 5 years in prison and five years on probation. I am now 39 years old and have been off probation for 10 years. I own my own business and am a tax paying law abiding citizen with a family. Now I am hearing that a represenitive from New Jersey wants to pull my passport and mark it with a Scarlet Letter out of the blue. I feel the judge will see that this is wrong and uncostitutional and will give us the injunction and overall we will win this fight. Again I have been off probation 10 years and own my own business and now they want to call me in and mark my passmark? No judge will stand for this.This needs to be heard under regular circumstances and not suspended rules….This is wrong and the Judge will show that the system does not work like this(UNDER SUSPENSION)…………..Thank you Janice. EX POST FACTO

we only wish it were so easy

Many thanks to Janice! And while we are anxiously awaiting the judge’s decision, let us be very thankful for who is on our side: CARSOL and Janice Bellucci, defender of civil liberties extraordinaire!

Thank You for everything you are doing for us Janice!

I hear from my therapist, my legal counsel, and other “authorities” that ” the pendulum is swinging back”. And that ,”the public and others are seeing the injustice!”. Really? Don’t see it happening. I think the people holding the cards would be happy only when we pull a “JonesTown” . What flavor Kool-aid is everyone’s favorite?

“…the pendulum is swinging back”. Citizen of the world, these “authorities” are correct. I have been in this ‘sand trap’ for 28 years and it was not until recently RCs started to get real legal support, we’ve hardly seen pro-RC articles, which, are now popping up more frequently and more courts have started to respond more favorable toward RC causes. Yes, there is along ways to go, however, favorable sand is moving.

Thanks to Janice, the pendulum is swinging back. It’s just that justice moves very slowly. The fight has only just begun.

It is swinging back. I was not aware of this issue until late last year. Since then I have spoken to a multitude of people and the vast majority, (in fact only one who believes there should be some sort of list), The vast majority believe that once someone has done their time and probation/parole, the punishment should stop. There should be no list. When they start to realize that this is only the first list in a series of others that would come down the pipeline and soon everyone can be on a list for one reason or another, they start to understand the danger to all of society. I know many of you have suffered for years. You have paid for your crimes and alleged crimes (for public urination is surely not one in my eyes amongst other ludicrous reasons people are put on this list). Do not dishearten. You speak of kook-aid? I read somewhere that a woman who works at a suicide hotline got a multitude of calls from children whose parents are on the list as well as other loved ones and “offenders” themselves. I wish you had data of statistics on this to present for this is real damage and punishment. I will, for my part, continue to spread the message about this list and it’s true meaning. To keep feeding the industrial prison complex that is supported by elected officials, DA’s, Judges and prosecuting attorneys. To make private prisons profitable they have to be full and sex offenders are the easiest target in my view since they same them into not defending themselves. Fight on. And hold your head high. This will end.

Concerned Citizen , all of what you just said made my day ! and I too would like see the statistics on the real damage from the punishment , Keep on Keepin on

I’m sorry, and I appreciate all Janice is doing, but the two reported questions, should have been easily anticipated. The question about who would see the marker, although incredibly stupid on the judge’s part, had been discussed here and I believe in the brief, although I have to go back and read it. With respect to the notification provision, I recall posts where it was stated that a decision where the judge allowed notifications to continue would be the ‘status quo’ and thus likely, clearly indicates the likelihood of a question on this issue.

I don’t think Janice was implying that she stumbled on the 2 questions.

it left that impression, at least with me. and i would love to be wrong, believe me. would love to see a transcript so we can see the entire proceedings.

I haven’t seen many people talking about that. I’m wondering if the Judge asked the same type of challenging questions to the Government Attorney.

I wish Janice had more help with this. There was supposed to be a Law Firm in DC involved in opposing this Law. They interviewed me as a potential Plaintiff, and indicated that they were considering filing their own action in DC Superior Court. They said that sex offense types of cases are “sort of on the fringes” of the types of cases that they represent. Nevertheless, I haven’t seen any such action from them.

Could be they’re watching… some good lessons can be learned here! And that’s right, I think there have been intentionally ill prepared cases brought forth over the years to build this rotten foundation we have

Tuna, if you don’t think Janice is doing a great job, you are free to hire an attorney and fight this or any other 290 issues on your own. Just because Janice files a lawsuit for her clients, doesn’t mean that anyone else can’t do the same. If you have the ability to file your own lawsuit, please do. I assume since you’re being critical, that you have at least sent your financial donation to do your part.

Thank you Janice, thanks also to all those that attended the hearing and thanks to those who were able to donate.

The status quo as far as the notifications are concerned, was an unannounced series of government actions. The status quo was a sneak attack. If it had been announced prior to its implementation, perhaps there would have been a legal response. For the judge to say, that it was the status quo, and thus should continue does not smell right. If allowed, then any government action, once started is the status quo and should be allowed.
The notifications are much worse than the passport identifier, even though the identifier is horrendous.

The same kind of logic would imply that in an unannounced series of government actions, the police have been forcing RSO’s to forfeit their bank accounts for years. Since they’ve been doing that without any legal basis, and not telling anyone, they should be allowed to continue to do that, because it’s the status quo.

The passport provision is especially horrendous for any RSO who already lives outside of the United States, but still needs to return to the US periodically for medical treatment (since the US is the only country who has advanced treatment for things). So does he risk having his passport stolen by the CBP, and probably not be able to return to his new foreign homeland? Or does he risk dying due to lack of medical treatment, because he doesn’t want to take the chance to return to the United States and become a virtual prisoner?

Please do not confuse the Motion and the Case In Chief. The status quo is a factor in the Motion, but not in the Case In Chief. We have contested and will continue to contest whether the government had the authority for Operation Angel Watch which the government now admits they have conducted since 2007. Stated simply, the government cannot continue a program that violated the Constitution.

You are a very courageous woman and I admire your strength and will. You have given a voice to the voiceless. The pendulum is swinging in the other direction. I wish that other lawyers would join you as this issue goes far beyond the civil liberties of ex-sex offenders in my view. It is a question of the simple undermining of the Constitution of the United States. Another troublesome trend is the implementation of new laws and then applying them ex post facto as they just did last year in one case I have been following. People charged with sex offenses, especially if they are charged in a very public manner in the press, have a very hard time defending themselves because the public shaming and pressure is so great, and the financial demands to pay to defend oneself is prohibitive to anyone not wealthy, they simply fold and take plea deals to stop the torture. I hope that your supporters grow in ranks. Your fight is not only for these men and women unjustly persecuted on the list, but also for the integrity and soul of our nation and our Constitution. Thank you for fighting for all of America.

All the status quo tells me is now we know why people are being banned from countries–We didn’t know that before nor could we challenge it if we didn’t know!

Absolutely. I’m not a lawyer but this admission that they have been institutioning this policy far beyond what was thought opens the window to challenge it in court. One cannot protest or challenge what one does not know exists.

And I note, this is being done under executive power, not by Congress. That is, this is what Obama wants, he did this singularly, quietly, behind the scenes.

I have a question more then a commit as a RSO l living in tijuan Mexico and Married to a Mexican Nationals, I also keep a residence in California to keep my registration current. I work in the US and cross three times a week. I have applied for my Mexico resendece visa and have starting the process for the Adams act waver. All this said, how do I comply with the notication at this juncture.
As of to date I have not been stop by Mexico custom Or has US customs said anything to me. If anyone has any information it would be appreciated greatly.
Stressed out

Was your case involving a minor?

As, I posted on another thread, on this site, this lawsuit is the first real opportunity for the facts and the truth of RC issues and the registry being aired in the mainstream, which, will expose the lying egg on many peoples faces and these peoples will fight to keeps these lies a float, at all cost. We have already a victory. because, every time Janice and team enters a court room, truth will get the spot light. Good job Janice, I got your back in this war.


With the passage of the IML, the spectre of the scarlet letter being added to our passports that will no doubt further discriminate RSO’s from traveling freely abroad; residency and presence restrictions being introduced annually at every state legislative proceeding; background checks becoming a routine requirement to rent a hotel room, let alone an apartment and in obtaining a home mortgage; in addition to proliferating in the employment screening out process and at every layer of local, state and federal lawmaking is the constant addition of barrier after barrier to mere survival in the United States…

… I am wondering: wouldn’t it be more prudent to attack the head of the monster, Smith v. Doe, and concentrate on quashing the antiquated Supreme Court decision that sex offender registration is merely regulatory and non-punitive in nature, rather than going after one of the monster’s many limbs?

Do you think we have enough evidence and/or resources, pooled nationally, that the Ex Post Facto Clause and/or the 1st, 4th. 5th, 8th, 13th or 14th Amendments are being violated to build a persuasive argument and take it to the Justices now?

I would be most interested to hear your opinion; and that of other scholars,lawyers and laymen; and from especially those who would be willing to be a plaintiff, like myself, should a federal civil rights complaint be raised against the burden Smith v. Doe so tacitly dismisses as “no more onerous than applying for a Price Club membership?”

I am ready to lend my name to that lawsuit today, simply from how my privacy has been totally obliterated allowing my identity to be stolen from being publicly identifiable on Megan’s Law.

I can’t speak for Janice, but I can give my take.

When Smith vs Doe passed, registration isn’t a punishment. Technically, there’s nothing to be done about it any longer because it’s not punishment. You need contrarian proof to prove punishment. One can do that by using recent cases that a state of federal government deems as a punishment, unconstitutional, or both.

Janice, Chance, and the rest of the team has already won with residency restrictions as well as have them deemed unconstitutional under California law, “in re Taylor”. (Well, it’s unconstitutional for parolees. Hopefully, it will get extended to all registrants.)

And now the IML and passport identifiers, when proven unconstitutional, will provide yet another feather of unconstitutionalities – plural.

“In re Taylor”, restrictions were akin to banishment. That’s a form of punishment as well as being unconstitutional.

Should Janice and team win the IML case, then that’s their second victory, but this time against the federal government. With several Doe’s on the case, there are several punishments to be identified, denoted, and to be rule unconstitutional.

IMO, Janice and team are piling up punishments – court supported punishments. And in doing so, bring empirical evidence. That’s how “in re Taylor” was ultimately won – on empirical evidence of banishment as 97% of available rental housing was unavailable to registrants on parole.

Similarly, the US government is forcing other countries to banish registrants from travelling to other countries. In fact, one of the Does is no longer a registrant, but will still be banished. Doe 3 is no longer a registrant and does work abroad. That’s two strikes against the IML because it directly affects Doe’s commerce and is no longer a registrant, but is subjected to the passport identifier and all of the IML other rules.

Courts want evidence. That’s how “in re Taylor” was won as it revisited the restrictions as punishment that was first brought up in People vs Mosley. So Janice really is attacking Smith v Doe head on, but from an empirical and constitutional evidentiary aspect. Similar plan to “in re Taylor”, but on a much larger scale. Proving the IML is unconstitutional undermines a lot of what Smith v Doe represents – a litany of punishments the government cannot refute as administrative.

Everybody needs to step back and take a deep breath…

I know you are injured, hurt and worn down by the daily grind of what an unfair system is imposing on you…

But it is not like you have a choice this damned thing. If there were any way we could walk away from this we would…

But we can’t….and oddly, this is our strength…we have to endure, fight the good fight, keep the faith, (especially in each other), and work towards a better day.

None of here would mind, I think, a fair hearing on each of our current individual circumstances….if my society gave me a fair hearing as to my danger…and there was an independent determination that I needed to be on this list…I think each of us would accept this.

If our society dealt with us fairly, justly, I suspect that it would be a very small registry that was left.

And maybe that list would do some good…again, treating the members of this disfavored class fairly…yes, this is a Registry I could support.

Until then, this current battle is just one of many to come…but this one still has to be fought.

I think it is going well.

But I know that pushing rocks uphill is always a difficult task…

And I thank Janice and her support staff more than they can know.

I want them to sleep well…they are truly, though it seems odd to say this, doing God’s work….trying to bring a little Justice to this poor world.

I am with you all the way.

Good Luck to everyone…remember, our job, (and as I like to think, the best revenge), is living as good and full and loving a Life as possible,

If we do that…and support Janice, we will be fine.

Best Wishes, James

Janice, glad to have the opportunity to watch you at work. The judge did have some tough questions, but what made the day was at the very end. She had spoken all through the hearing as if there were laws already in place that justified the present notifications, and therefore IML was just a continuance of those laws. One could see she was taken back when you mentioned you didn’t believe there were any laws to justify what they are doing. She began quickly shuffling through her papers as if to find that law and couldn’t. Check.

Timmr, did the Judge ask the same tough questions of the Government Attorney?

I do not unfortunately recall the exact dialogue. And I have been out camping for the last few days making the most of a long drive. My mind doesn’t have that sort of memory for dialogue. I would like to have recorded the session and don’t take notes fast enough. That being said, my impressions were that the judge was much less happy with the answers of the government’s lawyer, and cut her off tersely in the middle of making one last point. She had basically been reading off the government position already on record. I remember the judge asking “are you finished, yet?” Yes she was a little patronizing and doubtful with both sides. Maybe it was her way of keeping a impartial posture. I love to have a transcript to refresh my memory. I remember much better the actual body language of the participants. The government lawyer came off weak, even stuttering at some points. I got the impression she was an newby to all this. Janice came off very strong in the end and actually made at least a couple of people say “yes!” at the last remark. The judge had mentioned many times that there were laws already backing up the travel notifications. She kept asking Janice questions along the line of what was different between what is happening now and what will happen with the IML. Seemed to be her main point of questioning. When Janice mentioned that there were no laws backing up the present program, it seemed to undercut the whole basis of the questioning. Nor did the government defense jump in and mention at least one law that authorized what they had been doing.

The government could put up any nit-wit to argue this issue because they believe anything wont be seriously challenged. You send an idiot when you’re certain you have nothing to lose; had they sent their star attorney I’d been impressed

This is great to hear. Exactly the kind of on-site info we need. Thank you.

Thank You Janice for the great job your doing , in many ways I see this up hill fight as a good thing in small as well as large ways, like my oldest son , just went out and got a small part time job on top of his main job , just so he could afford to give me more money to send in for this very worth while fight , I feel so proud of him , its like he just opened his eyes thank you Janice , and thanks to everyone that gives ther time and hard earned money , thanks to all of the people that leave comments , because it helps me understand so much better as well as so many others just want to here another voice besides there own

I don’t know what relieves this might have but I fall under exclusion privilage from the public websit as my record as been exsupuged have applied for a pardon from 290 registration requirement as well but as my victim was a minor, I have very little hope this will ever happen, and to stress me out worse this could change as there is a bill in committy this month trying to elimate this exclusion privilage. if this happens my life will be over. I know US customs aware i am a RSO, as I am sent to secondary every time I cross the boarder. I have faith that the IML will be revised but my believe it’s never going away as this is just the beging, my believe is the federal government wants to track all people’s movement between our states and our countries boards.
We are easy targets to start this process and to profect the means to do so. Welcome to the new world order

Be great to have a transcript of the entire Feb 30 hearing for all to review here.

According to this gov website:

After a federal hearing, transcripts may be obtained after the 90-day period has ended, the filed transcript will be available for inspection and copying in the clerk’s office and for download from the court’s CM/ECF system through the judiciary’s PACER system

Yes, it would be great to have a transcript of the entire Feb 30 hearing start-to-finish for all to review here.

Also: Aren’t there any other federal injunction suits now filed or being filed in U.S. against International Megan’s Law (IML)? New York? New Jersey? D.C.? Massachusetts? Florida? Colorado? Oregon? Michigan? Shouldn’t there be 30-40 suits filed by now in the U.S. against this?

Aren’t there civil and human rights organizations that could and should be filing? What about national ACLU (I know there has been hesitance by ACLU to join in CA reform advocacy – for whatever organizational or personal reasons against RSOL or registrants present and past)?

What about other rights organizations who advocate for registrants present and past and their loved ones all over the U.S.? Not one is stepping up, too, to add volume to the pressure on this federal/international human rights issue?

What about civil and human rights attorneys with federal court experience, and large law schools’ civil and constitutional rights programs? There’s not even one other federal injunction case brought by anyone with actual federal court experience in the entire country? T

What about those of some wealth who are directly or indirectly affected by such law? Can they fund individual or class-action suits (with aggressive case-argument-experienced federal litigation attorneys) against IML?

If this sole case is the only one in the U.S. – and others are standing-by, likely for years, awaiting decisions and outcomes from this one case – what opportunities for reform are being missed?

Asking these questions is to press for others with direct federal case experience to join in, not necessarily question or fault others who’ve stepped forward in good faith to help.

This case is pretty much the case. because we are challenging federal law, any additional suits filed could be joined with this one. I would not put it past the government to request joinder in this case, so they are not fighting the case case in 5 different locations.

From the date the law was signed, you have three years to sue, so unless this case wraps up in less than three years there is not much chance to create a circuit split.

If this is the only complaint within the country, best that it was filed in the Ninth Circuit. If we can’t create a split that ensures a Supreme Court review, then the Ninth Circuit is our best bet. If some savvy pro se SO wants to file a complaint in another federal district court using the same arguments as Janice is using, it would be hard for the government to force that to be moved (hardship for the plaintiff) and be joined with the current case.

As for other so called civil rights organizations, I won’t name names but use their initials (ACLU), they are mostly a waste of time on this subject. In Washington State last year the State pass SB 5154-2015 and imposed a 21 day notification and waiting period requirement for all registrants. I asked the ACLU here to assist but they declined, so I filed action on my own. In my amended complaint I took portions of Janice’s arguments and language. We go to trial May 23rd. Over the last six months I failed in getting appellate review for a preliminary injunction and now am fighting a motion for summary judgment and dismissal, which i should win.

This is all happening on a shoestring budget without help from our friends at the ACLU. Even if I make bad law, at least I am fighting something worthy. In five years I am off the registry here anyway, so losing is not the end of the world for me.

Since Janice is doing the heavy lifting here, remember she needs our donations. Give generously, for she looks to be your only hope. God bless that woman, for she is a saint in my eyes.

BTW, the suite filed against Washington State regarding Senate Bill 5154-2015 has been filed in King County Superior Court, not in federal court. Just wanted to clarify it is a case filed in state court.

Matthew, I was trying to find the text of SB 5154-2015. What are the cliff notes on this law?

Here is the relevant section (which refers to all registrants no matter the offense):

(3) Any person required to register under this section who
10 intends to travel outside the United States must provide, by
11 certified mail, with return receipt requested, or in person, signed
12 written notice of the plan to travel outside the country to the
13 county sheriff of the county with whom the person is registered at
14 least twenty-one days prior to travel. The notice shall include the
15 following information: (a) Name; (b) passport number and country; (c)
16 destination; (d) itinerary details including departure and return
17 dates; (e) means of travel; and (f) purpose of travel. If the
18 offender subsequently cancels or postpones travel outside the United
19 States, the offender must notify the county sheriff not later than
20 three days after cancellation or postponement of the intended travel
21 outside the United States or on the departure date provided in the
22 notification, whichever is earlier. The county sheriff shall notify
23 the United States marshals service as soon as practicable after
24 receipt of the notification. In cases of unexpected travel due to
25 family or work emergencies, or for offenders who travel routinely
26 across international borders for work-related purposes, the notice
27 must be submitted in person at least twenty-four hours prior to
28 travel to the sheriff of the county where such offenders are
29 registered with a written explanation of the circumstances that make
30 compliance with this subsection (3) impracticable

All registered offenders no matter the offense must provide written notice 21 days before leaving the country. In a family emergency, or for “routine” business travel, you can provide a minimum 24 hour in-person advance notice with the county sheriff, providing a written explanation why it was “impractable” to provide 21 days notice. Of course the sheriff registration office keeps bankers hours and is not open weekends. Only one office in my county I can go to.

Matthew –
Where do you get your facts? Please give legal citation. If you do not live in a SORNA state, which CA is not, you have no one to give this notification to, and there is no requirement to report. I have travelled out of the country many times and have NEVER told anyone.

This is for the State of Washington.

As Janice mentioned, for non-SORNA States, there is no mechanism in place for those RSO’s to provide notification, to anyone for anything. And for those of us who are not required to register in their home state, but still required to register in their conviction state which is non-SORNA state ? No mechanism.

A whole different issue btw: Why force an RSO to register in a state that they no longer live, work, or pay taxes in.

@PK – yes, Washington state, as MatthewLL specifically took the trouble to clarify…. huh?

Why you would be required to register in a state in which you do not reside (given that the whole purpose is strictly to enhance public safety by informing others of your presence in their neighborhood)?

Good question. I would lean toward “perpetual punishment” but SCOTUS tells us that this is not the case.

“Why you would be required to register in a state in which you do not reside (given that the whole purpose is strictly to enhance public safety by informing others of your presence in their neighborhood)?”

I’ve posted the same question several times on this Blog, and no one seems to have a clue.

There was a case in NY about this, that almost resembles my case exactly:
Doe vs. O’Donnell 2011

They say that the Registry has a “Dual Purpose” which includes “keeping track” of RSO’s. I’ve never heard of such a dual purpose, I always was under the impression that it is there to protect the public from those RSO’s WHO LIVE AND WORK near those poor petrified and paranoid parents.

“If an RSO moves out of state and is no longer required to register in his new Home State, then ‘how in the world would law enforcement be able to keep track of them?'” Basically what they wrote in their opinion.

This was a NY State case, and the Plaintiff has yet to escalate this federally. He was represented by well-known SO Attorney Kathy E. Manley.

One of the argument against the Washington State notification and waiting requirement is that it violates equal protection. Visiting sex offenders who are not in Washington long enough do not have to register and therefore are not bound by the requirement. However as a registered sex offender in Washington State, if I am temporarily in a state that does not require notification, or even require me to register for my misdemeanor offense, I still have to give Washnimgton notice before leaving the country form that state.

There are lots of problems with the law, but sadly it will take the appellate court system, perhaps the state Supreme Court to rule to get justice. Elected judges don’t always follow the constitution if it is too controversial.

I wanted to Commend MatthewLL for filing his own lawsuit…if 850,000 of us did so and maybe associated family members, the system might crash.

The Florida Action Committee Lawsuit also was great….

I also saw when I was traveling some appeal to Civil Disobedience or Protest….Eventually, Yes, I am not sure we have the critical mass yet of members willing to go out on a limb like MathewLL…

But I have been wrong on a lot of stuff, maybe now is the time….so Good on Everyone taking an active and Activist approach to these injustices.

Best Wishes, James

@James, an RSO aint got that kind of money to file expensive lawsuits. I would imagine most don’t even have jobs. How do you figure any RSO would have a decent job with people’s pictures plastered all over the Internet as dangerous Child Sex Traffickers?

For my little s*** Misdemeanor for hooking up with someone who was 16 and lied about their age, I will never have a decent job in the United States again. I worked for a large Government Defense Contractor up until 2009. I figured with my skills, switching jobs would be easy. Ha! think again. A simple Google Search tells all about my horrible crime. Whatever! I gave up even trying looking for a decent job in the US long ago. Actually I gave up on the US long ago.

PK….I know what you are saying…I understand that I am lucky in this regards…but how to help people in your position is a….concern of mine.

What can I do? I don’t know yet, but I like what MathewLL did….I wanted to send him kudos even if he loses in May.

More of us need to do this or things…not necessarily you, PK, but others of us…that may in the end help you also.

Best Wishes, James

Yeah James, maybe we need to move our minds away from the idea that we fight them only when we think we can win and start to fight them because fighting them is the only right thing to do.

PK, I am so sorry for what happen to you and understand some of what you are going through. My offense was for a misdemeanor (originally charged with a Class A felony) and in Washington I am not posted on the state web site. I was never outed by the news, so nothing shows up on a google search with my name. So I am fully employed and very thankful for it, but this is not the case for all and it should be.

Even though I am not known as a SO in my community, am fully employed, and only have five more years on the WA registry, I have decided to fight this tooth and nail. The reason is because when it is over in WA it is not over everywhere. The Idaho Supreme Court ruled last year that my offense was one that required registration in Idaho (which is BS) and would make me register for life. So it is never really over even if your state releases you, for some s***hole state will likely require lifetime registration.

There was an appellate decision last year in CA regarding the same Washington State offense, which ruled (in a weird partial publication ruling) that the offender had to register in CA, even though Washington State did not require registration. The case appeared to be terribly represented by plaintiff counsel and was a bad ruling. There did not seem to be a lot of precedent in that ruling and with the right case could get it over turned.

My legal costs are my time, copy expenses, and filing fees, that is it. We can add to the fight without a lot of costs if we work together. Filing complaints in many jurisdictions using the same legal arguments and briefs. Make the state and federal governments spend time and money fighting. They can’t force pro se litigants to band together into one case, can they?

“There was a case in NY about this, that almost resembles my case exactly:
Doe vs. O’Donnell 2011”

As a result of the Nichols Case in Kansas, this Doe Plaintiff from NY is moving forward with a Federal Action.

I may enjoin on this, as Doe’s circumstances are nearly identical to mine.

@MathewLL I would probably pursue a legal fight, however, the United States isn’t really Home anymore for me. I have no attachments except a few family members. Besides I don’t really like the way people treat each other in the states, and I can speak for the people in DC- they are not very nice.

Even though there is a Federal Action that I’m considering enjoining, I will have to think long and hard as to whether I will want to devote resources that I will definitely need in the future.

Why do you say that the 9th Circuit is our best bet?

Out of curiosity, does anyone have any idea about a time-frame if this thing were to end up in 9th Circuit Appeals, or even the Supreme Court?

Many would make the case most liberal circuit in the U.S. This is one of our best shots. DC would also be a good option.


The new law doesn’t concern level one sex offenders. The ACLU has done a lot for RSO’s in Washington State. There was a push by some legislators to allow level one offenders to be listed on the state public website. The ACLU pushed backed and level 1 offenders will continue to remain anonymous. That is a REALLY BIG DEAL Matthew. And the ACLU should be thanked. You must be a higher level offender. Just because the ACLU couldn’t help your cause doesn’t mean they haven’t helped many others. RSO’s have very few allies as it is so don’t burn your bridges with organizations that are trying to help. You won’t always get exactly what you want but take what you can


The issue last year regarding release of level I offender information was about a woman requesting the information under a FOIA request. There were several cases filed in court by registered offenders who did not want their information released. The ruling was not just an ACLU supported effort, but a concerted effort by many.

Washington is a bit different than most states, for your level designation is based on a risk assessment performed by law enforcement and the duration of registration based on the offense ifself. You can be a Level I and have to register for life or a level three with a 10 year registration period. (RCW 9A.44.140 & 4.24.550)

As for the new international travel notification and waiting period requirement just past(SB-5154-2015), this applies to all registered sex offenders in Washington. It is not narrowed by offense or whether the victim is a minor, and it applies retroactively. As of right now, all registrants in the state have to provide three weeks notice before leaving the country.

I applaud you for filing the case on your own. I imagine every defender, whether an organization or individual will filter out cases for one reason or another.
Not really related to IML, but if California puts me back on the public registry, I will look for a lawyer to challenge that or if that doesn’t work, look to see how I can challenge it on my own.
Even if many RSO’s may think it is unfair to have the exclusion in the beginning, it is still unfair to put myself and family back on the hit list after 10 years of being off, for no probable cause. If the legislatures can reverse decisions that benefit us without any challenge, it will just be that much easier for them to do it next time.

Touche Matt. Wow! I didn’t know things have changed that fast in Washington State. I was pretty sure level 1 offenders were protected from public websites. But now that the high court ruled in this woman’s favor, I can see potentially thousands of lives (including juveniles) disrupted by the new changes. Arizona will probably be the next domino to fall because some politician there has been pushing a bill to get level 1 offenders listed. Your take on new the international notification law is very informative. I wish you nothing but the best success in May

No California will be next, because there is a bill already submitted by the vice chair of the Assembly Public Safety Committee to put those who have a waiver from the Megan’s Law website back on the public shaming list. These people are not technically level 1, because California does not have a tiered system, but they do receive the waiver due to a low risk assessment from the court appointed psychologist, and given a suspended sentence, sounding a lot like the level ones in Washington. They are generally a group that has a lower than average re-offense rate.

That’s not good. And I thought CA was moving in the right direction when a court overturned the restrictive residency ordinances throughout the state. Seems like they took one step forward and another step backward. But CA still isn’t as bad as here in Wisconsin where many towns & cities (including Milwaukee the largest city in the state) are totally off limits to offenders no matter the tier level

What is the re-offense rate of those other groups..?
Don’t you think people would plead guilty to being a ‘sex’ offender like you did to be “exempt”..?
There sure was NOT a ‘level one’ or ‘exempt’ at that time back.
Pleading guilty to lesser offense is the reality to ‘level 1’ ‘exempt’.
Pleading guilty to lesser offense can also have one not even on registry as is not a ‘sex’ offense.
Your comment comes across ‘better than you’…and I say humble down.

The time to give you the option to apply for a Megan’s Law exemption is at sentencing, not years later after you already got it and they say, opps, we have to take away what we gave you or add on more restrictions you thought you had left behind. Sorry.
But isn’t that the story of this registry.

I never in a million years plead guilty to this BS Misdemeanor, had I known they were going to pull a fast one on me.

I actually have it in writing that if I plead guilty it would be a 10 year requirement to register.

Now 16 years later still on the Registry.

Does Washington State RSO meet monthly like CA does? if not, I would encourage you to start one.

The Washington State Supreme Court just today released an opinion reversing the Superior Court’s injunction preventing release of information regarding Level I offenders. So now those names are not keep confidential and potentially thousands of people will soon become unemployed and homeless when this crazy woman puts all those names on her website. The court ruled the information can be released under the public disclosure law. The legislature recently rejected a recommendation by the state sex offender policy board to make that information exempt. At this moment I don’t know whether that will include address information as well,

A little off topic but still relevant to IML . I renewed my Passport early just before I was convicted anticipating something like this , my passport says its good until 2023 did I avoid any trouble here by doing this ? I was convicted of pc 261(a)(4) I have 14 months left on parole and I want to travel after that (no other convictions) Do you think they will ask for the passport back ? I am in Calif would I have to announce my travel plans ? When would this law go into effect ? Are there any other states taking this to court like our RSOL ?

You’ve asked a lot of good questions, Catch22, and I will answer the ones with which I feel comfortable. In my personal opinion (not a legal opinion), you did the right thing by getting your passport now. The IML forbids the Secretary of State from issuing new passports without the “unique identifier”, but only authorizes the Secretary to revoke existing passports if he/she feels it is necessary. My best guess is that it will take the government a lot longer to revoke existing passports than it will be to add the identifier to new passports. Because the law was signed by the President, it is now technically in effect but it has not yet been implemented because of the Motion for Preliminary Injunction that was filed.

So technically if I do not have a current passport, ( I am eligible to get of probation in approx. 6 months, FYI) would you advise applying for a passport immediately since the Motion for Preliminary Injunction that was filed has put a temporary hold on the Identifier? I fear that even with an expedited passport request, it would not be issued before the decision was made, if indeed the motion fails. Asking for your personal opinion of course.

Filing a Motion for Preliminary Injunction is not the same as being granted a Motion for Preliminary Injunction. As a result, there is not a “temporary hold” on passport identifiers. Instead, the State Department is moving forward to design a passport identifier and to determine how such an identifier can be affixed to a passport. Only IF the judge grants the injunction will there be a “temporary hold” on passport identifiers.

Hi Janice, I was wondering I live in California and have to travel for work to New York for 3 to 4 days. I’m done with parole but still have to register. Is there anything I have to do legally? Or am I ok to just fly out there do my business and fly back?

Jae –
Just go, NY has a longer time in order to register. I go there several times a year, and never stay longer than a week, never had any issue.

Rob is right, just go and don’t worry about it. All states have some grace period and I believe NY is 10 days.

I know for a fact NY is 10 days to register or 30 days total within a year.

I also just confirmed with the NY DOJ that it’s 10 days and they don’t require you to register there as long as you’re not there for longer. However, doesn’t CA require that if we leave for longer than 5 days (I think it is), that we have to notify our local PD? At least, that’s how I understand it after reading it. However, I called CA DOJ and they told me not to worry that if I’m only going for 7 days, I don’t need to notify my local PD. With all the new rules and punishments coming out every day, I’m paranoid that I’ll unknowingly break a rule.

BTW, be aware that the identifier might be put in the RDIF chip on the passport card, not something visible tot he eye. Make the legal arguments cover that too.

Are you talking about a passport or passport card? Because the card only allows western hemisphere travel to Canada & Mexico and some Caribbean nations. So a unique identifier on a passport card would be useless since Canada & Mexico already share a US criminal database that flags RSO’s from entering those countries. And I have a feeling that most Caribbean Nations are also hooked up to the criminal database. The present RDIF chip on the passport card will expose that info

I’d like to comment on requesting a new passport before an identifier is decided upon. I live in CA and just renewed my passport (the prior one expired in 2017, but because of the IML I submitted a non-expedited application). I received the new passport in under 10 days. There are no visible markings that I can see. Having something in the chip is something that I am unaware of (if it even exists).
I’m not planning on traveling outside the US until 2018 and will keep close tabs on what happens.
As I’m new to this website, and after reading quite a few comments, I too want to thank Janice for all that she is doing. I’m extremely happy with her efforts, and especially with her communications, in this long fight.

DS could you indicate when exactly you received your new Passport?

I’m trying to figure out how much time I have left before they try to steal mine.

Hey, DS…that is a very valuable idea. Hummmm

I will think on this…thanks!

Best Wishes, James

You might consider making a photo copy of your current passport. In Mexico, most of the time after the border, you do not have to show your passport but a photo copy. I do not know about other countries.

Mike, or the Passport you have now could disappear?

Thank You so very very much Janice!!! i wish there would be others with your legal knowledge to join the fight as much as you are. The ACLU should be ashamed, very ashamed that they are not constantly fighting these unjust laws that affect so many! Here in Florida I can’t even vote!

Again, Thank you so very very much!!! you are the only hope for so many!!!!

Hay! I noticed your comment. Janice totally is a God send, but their are many lawyers who work to make Parole and life on the Registry easier and Chance Oberstein is also one of them, and countless others it’s just praying we come into contacted with a great lawyer who understands what we go through on parole and the registry. I pray things work out it’s a lot we go through being registrant. Good luck on your quest friend. Just in case you needed another one of Gods angels to help you with anything now you know 2 Chance Oberstein and Janice Bellucci

There are some poping up here and there. Soon, we will have more than enough willing to help

I was facing 20 years on parole. I was sentenced to 3 yrs, but a new law had passed. I was told this was it. It could never be over turned. We get so many letters in the mail promising that they can help us. Lies!, but by the grace of God I found Chance Oberstein # 1-949-3656-5842. I’m glad I took a chance On him best money ever spent. Because I’m no longer doing 20 years on parole. He was the only lawyer who knew what he was talking about. So if your looking for a Lawyer who knows what he’s talking about I sincerely recommend him. Thanks Mr. Oberstein your honesty, and support was appreciated.

It seems to me that a valid argument against such a mark in one’s passport is that the laws across our land, and the world, are very different. For instance, having been convicted of breaking a law in California, it may very well be that my actions would not have been illegal in other states of the U.S., much less in many parts of our world. Therefore, any universal “scarlet letter” such as one included in an international passport, is cruel, and certainly ridiculous.

Does anyone have any idea about how long an injunction decision should take?

As long as the judge wants, typically I’d say 30 – 60 days in the federal system

Thank you soooooo much Janice!!!


What is more fraudulent is using statistics to sentence anyone to more restrictions. It is not due process at all or will it ever be. It derives from viewing people as commodities with certain traits determined by the group set, rather than individuals with a choice. 5%? 90%? what relevance is that anyway? When the people start punishing you for someone else’s offense, we are at the end of society as we have known it.
There is a simple way to affect adherence to the Bill of Rights and to protect victims of crimes and that is education and awareness and voluntary treatment as is done with alcoholism and other social problems. Registration is not the only answer or even a good answer to achieve legitimate goals. Have other options been tried? Not really. The studies that show the registry has failed should be the main statistic used against the registry. Other measures that promise better results and don’t require mangling the wording of the Constitution can and should be applied.

I totally agree. The way they get around this is, the registration is tied to a never expiring statute of limitations of the crime that you were charged with. It’s a bit of spurious legal maneuvering, and it’s part of what makes the International Meagan’s Law so wrong, because they report an RSO as someone guilty of a sex crime. If you received differed adjudication, you are not guilty of a sex crime. You are just a person who was charged with a sex crime being forced to register because of a never expiring statute of limitations tied to the definition of the crime you were charged with.

If other countries knew the facts of this, they would probably not understand it, because they have laws that are about justice. If they did understand it, they would probably laugh and say no, so the US tricks them into cooperating by calling us “criminals”. That word they understand. It is of course dishonest, and slander, but hey, this is the good oll’ USA… God bless America

“this is the good oll’ USA… God bless America” No

Here is information on how to order a transcript or audio recording of March 30 initial IML hearing in Ninth District Courtroom, Oakland, CA:

US District Court, Northern California Ninth District – Clerks Offices (San Francisco and Oakland locations)

Transcripts Procedures and Requests

US District Court, Northern California Ninth District – Home Page
(Cases of Interest shown on Home Page do not include IML)

I really appreciate what Janice is doing and wish I could afford to donate.

I am an RSO in Texas. Granted, it’s not a SORNA state, but the restrictions make some things impossible for my wife and two young children. We have no laws preventing anyone from discriminating against us for any residence or services. My wife just tried to enroll our children in a swim program, and was denied simply because our address shows up as having an RSO. I was not on the application at all and would never have gone to their location.

We can’t afford our current house since I lost my job, but can’t move because rentals won’t rent to us. It’s too hard to find an affordable house that is not within a restricted range of schools, parks, daycare, or any other place where children could congregate. The only appartment in the Dallas area that rents to RSO’s has over 16 living there (I wouldn’t want my kids there) and charges higher rents for RSOs. Neighbors hate us and complain that we bring their property value down. Even low risk offenders here like myself are put on the website and maps.

Of course, it’s impossible to find a job, and even though I should be off the registry in 3 more years, I’ve already been blacklisted by all the major employers in my field. I was required to keep applying in order to get 6 months of unemployment, and as ordered by my PO after that.

In regards to International Travel, most of the country doesn’t understand the issue.

RSO’s were never judged on an individual basis to be a threat to children in another country. Simply telling another country “here is an RSO” means other countries won’t let us in at all. It’s not like other countries are going to put in the effort and cost of finding out if I am a threat when my own government won’t. This also means instead of my own country doing it once, every other country in the world I have to travel to either has to perform an independent evaluation or, most likely, just deny me.

Prior to being an RSO, I traveled a lot in Europe with my wife a couple times. What happens when you take trains, busses, or planes between countries that pass through other countries? I know on train trips, we had to show our passport at most borders to an agent that borded the train. Does that mean even if you get into Europe as an RSO that you could be stuck somewhere, arrested, or sent back simply because you traveled between countries and went though one that rejects RSOs? What about hotels that require seeing your passport? They could discriminate as well and an entire family stuck with no place to stay due to needing advanced reservations during busy times.

A scarlet letter on a passport is the worst idea imaginable.

In Texas, we already have one year driver’s licenses which is a secret “scarlet letter” in itself for RSOs. There is nothing to stop businesses from discriminating against us once it becomes well known.

I sure hope someone can have luck in winning cases against Scarlet Letters. I thought we all learned in grade school how bad that is. God’s speed.


If in Smith V Doe 2003 the US Supreme Court held registration to be constitutional because the Alaska requirements at the time did not impose any disability or restraint on the offender, wouldn’t a scarlet letter on a passport with no due process to evaluate an individual’s potential threat be exactly that, a restraint on the offender? It’s common sense that the country looking at the scarlet letter will not invest time and money to ascertain the level of threat. There is also no safeguard to get un-banned from another country once an individual’s registration period is over if they tried to enter that country while an RSO.

Another interesting case: Doe v. Moore, 410 F.3d 1337, 1340 (11th Cir. 2005) (concluding that registrant has no fundamental right to be free from registration requirements because such requirements do not infringe on any right that is “deeply rooted in this Nation’s history and tradition”)

Most interesting article covering major SO cases I’ve read:

Thanks again!

Chris F


I am sorry to hear about how Texas is treating you. At least you are off in three years, and if you are blacklisted there, you should leave the state at some point. There will be some other states you could move to after you are off the list in Texas that will not require registration, but you would need to check on which states that would be at the time to make sure.

Your question about Smith v. Doe is the same question many people are asking. That decision was twelve years ago and a lot has changed. Many more restrictions and burdens have been imposed since then, and all of these new restrictions since Doe have yet to be reviewed by the US Supreme Court. I think most courts are taking Smith much further than the opinion reads. However there are many states that have ruled now their registration schemes are punitive, but that just means every new SO added to the list after that point can have those restrictions imposed.

Most people may not realize, but the Alaska Smith v. Doe case that the Supreme Court ruled on was decided by the State Supreme Court to be punishment and therefore could not be applied retroactive. That however does not mean it is not constitutional to apply retrospectively.

I do not know what the answer is for fixing this mess. The courts can only go so far in addressing the ex post facto claim. At some point we grow out of that. We need to work on the legislatures to some how reverse course. It may require another boogeyman to take the place of sex offenders, for it is human nature to hate someone.

The entirety of the registry is a scarlet letter, from its very basic concept of simply registration itself. That’s why even the foundation of registration must be attacked more fundamentally. The concept of registration itself is a scarlett letter — I’ve used that term for it for decades, since even long before it ever went public. The mark does not need to be visible to the public, you are marked regardless and suffer from it.

Gee, the assertion that registration itself is not punishment is blind justice — it has been considered to be punishment at least ever since Hawthorne wrote the book. To be put on a list of people to be hounded is punishment, whether forever or not, and regardless of whether that list is made public. No one has ever argued it as such.

The difference between the Puritans of the 17th Century and now is that the Puritans were, at least, honest about the scarlet letter being punishment.

If i don’t like the laws here because of how it constricts my freedom of travel, freedom of association, freedom of speech, et cetera, then my option would be to leave this country.

However, that is becoming impossible.

So besides suicide to end this perpetual post-prison punishment, what other options do i have? Nothing.

This is torture. One slipup and i’m in prison.

Nicholas if you reallly wanted to leave, you could do it, it is not that hard. Didn’t the Pilgrims come here like 100 years ago? You could always charter a boat.

i would like to see someone challenge the Courts with facts and statistical data on recidivism rates and see what justification the courts can come up with for continuing to uphold these laws.there is no justification they can use to explain why a class of citizens with a near 0 percent reoffense rate is subject to registration and others who have extremely high recidivism rates are not subject to anything after they serve their sentences

Funny you mention that, because Utah just came out with a registry for those that committed certain types of financial fraud.

I don’t know if that is good or bad for the cause of getting rid of a Sex Offender Scarlet Letter or the SO public registry.

On one hand, perhaps it will get challenged (hasn’t yet that I saw) because of the constitutional violations and we can use the same arguments.

On the other hand, it will become a new and accepted practice and public humiliation that prevents rehabilitation will start popping up for most crimes.

If the latter is the case, it’s time to move…oh wait…we can’t with the new passport scarlet letter imprisoning us in the U.S.

You can find lots of good examples of past court decisions regarding public shaming, as well as lots of other info here:

Hello Janice, I don’t get to this site to much since I am here in Virginia. Yes, I’m the one that sent you the Christmas e-mail greetings.
Janice dear: all this is a sign of the mark of the beast. Pretty soon a sex offender can’t go from State to State.
As far as international travel its a political tactic. Now if you tell me my house is going to burn down to the ground and it happens two months latter by some known arson than I owe you one.
Are sex offenders no better than murderers? When I’m out to dinner with friends or associates I don’t know if they are a sex offender or not. Their a sinner just like everybody else.

You know these sex law’s are getting to out of hand. The internet sting operations net lots of money and really who’s conning who? First and foremost law officers are suppose to protect and serve. They are not protecting a child on the internet as would the is mislead in all this.

Now 100% is 100% and truth is truth. Anyone politician can make up some ordinance or strive to get that past but they hinder more than they help. Janice use your law and stand your ground.

Two wrongs don’t make a right. Now what if they don’t let them board the plane or when they get to the destination show the passport than are detained or murdered or something. Well that throw’s the good ole US government off the hook and makes things a bit better. For who?

If people would think about all this instead of jumping to mass hysteria in all these sex offender laws and rules and restrictions maybe there would be no cyber crimes or more punishments like this passport crap.

Worse than a scarlet letter. This reeks of the Nazis putting yellow Stars of David on the identification papers of Jews. Then they can tattoo the DoC numbers on our forearms to make it complete. If there is not protection in the Constituton against having to provide the government your travel plans, under threat of incarceration, and being made a separate class because of a past crime for which the sentence was served, then the Constitution is broken. It certainly is oppression and tyranny, and is worsened anytime a politician or script writer wants some easy points.

Will a transcript / audio recording of the March 30 IML hearing be posted onto the CA RSOL site here for us to read and/or listen to the proceedings? I am not in a financial position to order.

Here is information on how to order a transcript or audio recording of March 30 initial IML hearing in Ninth District Courtroom, Oakland, CA:

US District Court, Northern California Ninth District – Clerks Offices (San Francisco and Oakland locations)

Transcripts Procedures and Requests

US District Court, Northern California Ninth District – Home Page
(Cases of Interest shown on Home Page do not include IML)

Would love your thoughts, please comment.x