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Justices to Hear Sex Offender's Challenge to Facebook Ban

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Posted at 3:47 PM, Oct 28, 2016
and last updated 2016-10-28 15:47:00-04

WASHINGTON (AP) - The Supreme Court will take up a free-speech challenge to a North Carolina law banning registered sex offenders from using Facebook and other social networking sites that minors can join.

The justices on Friday agreed to review a North Carolina Supreme Court ruling that upheld the law. The high court acted on an appeal from Lester Packingham, who was convicted of violating the law after maintaining a Facebook account under a different name.

A lower state court had found the law violated free-speech rights by preventing a wide range of communication.

Packingham initially was convicted in 2002 of taking indecent liberties with a child in Carbarrus County near Charlotte. He was convicted in 2012 of violating the social networking law after police in Durham found his Facebook page.

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