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FBI investigates Klein over "kiddie porn" advertising allegations

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FBI investigates Klein over "kiddie porn" advertising allegations09/25/95 WASHINGTON, D.C.--The FBI has launched a child pornography investigation into designer Calvin…

FBI investigates Klein over “kiddie porn” advertising allegations

09/25/95

WASHINGTON, D.C.–The FBI has launched a child pornography investigation into designer Calvin Klein’s latest ad campaign, which features semi-dressed young people in sexually provocative situations and poses.

Critics of the campaign charge that two of the models used were underage.

Justice Department spokesman Carl Stern told The Wall Street Journal that if the allegations are true, federal child pornography laws could apply.

Stuart Cameron, an agent for Women Model Management, Inc., the firm that represents the four models used in the campaign, told The Journal that the models were well over the age of 18.

The controversial ads promoting Calvin Klein jeans, which began appearing in magazines, on television and on city buses in early July, sparked an outcry of protests from parents, retailers and child welfare groups. The American Family Association is demanding to know the ages of the models, and sent a letter to U.S. Attorney General Janet Reno insisting that the Justice Department investigate whether Klein and his associates violated federal laws.

The FBI said that their probe into the campaign began prior to the controversy, when agency employees alerted the FBI’s Violent Crimes Unit of the ads appearing on New York City buses.

A spokesperson for Klein told The Journal that the “Justice Department had not contacted us and we are confident that we did not violate any law.”

Klein ceased the campaign on August 28, claiming that the ads were misunderstood.