CA Penal Code Section 313

As used in this chapter:


“Harmful matter” means matter, taken as a whole, which to the average person, applying contemporary statewide standards, appeals to the prurient interest, and is matter which, taken as a whole, depicts or describes in a patently offensive way sexual conduct and which, taken as a whole, lacks serious literary, artistic, political, or scientific value for minors.


When it appears from the nature of the matter or the circumstances of its dissemination, distribution or exhibition that it is designed for clearly defined deviant sexual groups, the appeal of the matter shall be judged with reference to its intended recipient group.


In prosecutions under this chapter, where circumstances of production, presentation, sale, dissemination, distribution, or publicity indicate that matter is being commercially exploited by the defendant for the sake of its prurient appeal, that evidence is probative with respect to the nature of the matter and can justify the conclusion that the matter lacks serious literary, artistic, political, or scientific value for minors.


“Matter” means any book, magazine, newspaper, video recording, or other printed or written material or any picture, drawing, photograph, motion picture, or other pictorial representation or any statue or other figure, or any recording, transcription, or mechanical, chemical, or electrical reproduction or any other articles, equipment, machines, or materials. “Matter” also includes live or recorded telephone messages when transmitted, disseminated, or distributed as part of a commercial transaction.


“Person” means any individual, partnership, firm, association, corporation, limited liability company, or other legal entity.


“Distribute” means to transfer possession of, whether with or without consideration.


“Knowingly” means being aware of the character of the matter.


“Exhibit” means to show.


“Minor” means any natural person under 18 years of age.
Last Updated

Aug. 19, 2023

§ 313’s source at ca​.gov