Privacy Law

Judge Refuses to Release Names of SEC Lawyers Who Viewed Porn at Work

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The identity of the Securities and Exchange Commission lawyer who spent up to eight hours of day watching pornography at work will remain a secret under a federal judge’s ruling.

U.S. District Judge Christine Arguello turned down a Denver lawyer’s request for the names of porn-watching SEC employees, citing privacy concerns, the Denver Post reports. “The court concludes that the public interest in the individuals’ names is negligible, at best,” Arguello wrote.

Denver lawyer Kevin Evans had filed a Freedom of Information Act request for the employees’ names and their government positions. “I think the courts have so watered down FOIA that the exemptions are swallowing the rules,” he told the Denver Post.

An SEC investigation had found 24 SEC employees and seven employees of SEC contractors had viewed pornography during work hours on agency computers, the story says. Past news reports said the porn-watching employees included a Washington, D.C.-based senior attorney, a Division of Enforcement senior counsel, and a regional office senior enforcement attorney. The D.C. senior attorney had admitted spending up to eight hours a day accessing Internet porn.

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