A federal judge has ruled that local bookstores such as The King's English and Sam Weller's Zion Bookstore, along with other local distributors of information, do not have legal standing to take part in a lawsuit regarding the Utah Harmful to Minors Act.

However, U.S. District Judge Dee Benson turned down an effort by Utah Attorney General Mark Shurtleff to dismiss the entire suit and permitted certain other plaintiffs to pursue certain claims.

The Harmful to Minors Act is intended to make Internet service providers, Web hosts and content providers limit the ability of minors to get pornography on the Internet.

The bookstores filed a lawsuit in federal court challenging the law, claiming among other things that it violates the U.S. Constitution.

Other Utah entities taking part in the lawsuit were Nathan Florence, a Salt Lake artist; Andrew McCullough, an attorney; the Utah Progressive Network Education Fund; the American Civil Liberties Union; IPNS of Utah; and RigidTech.Com Inc.

Other out-of-state plaintiffs taking part in the suit include the Sexual Health Network and the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund .

Benson ruled in a written opinion released Thursday that the following entities do not have standing to participate: The King's English, Sam Weller's, IPNS, RigidTech.Com, Utah Progressive Network Education Fund and Andrew McCullough.

E-MAIL: lindat@desnews.com