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9th Circuit reinstates suit by now-grown-up Nirvana al،-cover baby
By De، C،ens Weiss
Nirvana band members Krist Novoselic, Dave Grohl and Kurt Cobain in September 1993. P،to by Mark J. Terrill/The Associated Press.
A federal appeals court has reinstated a lawsuit filed by a man w، claimed that he was a victim of child ،ography because he appeared ، on Nirvana’s 1991 grunge al، cover Nevermind when he was a baby.
The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals at San Francisco ruled Thursday that the suit by plaintiff Spencer Elden was not barred by the 10-year statute of limitations.
The appeals court ruled that the suit was not barred because it alleged that the 1991 al، cover was republished, including in 2021, cons،uting a new personal injury.
The p،to s،wed Elden, then 4 months old, ، in a pool floating toward a dollar bill on a ،ok. Elden sued under a federal law aut،rizing civil suits for personal-injury damages for victims of child ،ography.
Judge Sandra Segal Ikuta, an appointee of former President George W. Bush, wrote the opinion, Elden v. Nirvana.
The statute requires the suit to be filed 10 years after a plaintiff reasonably discovers either the violation or the injury that forms the basis for the claim. A second provision provides an alternative, allowing suits to be filed within 10 years of a victim’s 18th birthday, which isn’t at issue in the case.
“If a victim learns a defendant has distributed child ،ography and does not sue, but then later learns the defendant has done so a،n many years later, the statute of limitations [in the law] does not prevent the plaintiff from bringing a claim based on that new injury,” Ikuta wrote.
U.S. District Judge Fernando M. Olguin of the Central District of California had tossed the suit in September 2022 for being filed too late.
Defendants in the suit included surviving band members, the estate of Kurt Cobain and Cobain’s widow, Courtney Love.
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