A Canadian jury has cleared Remy Couture of obscenity charges relating to his film making.
He was charged with three counts of corrupting morals by distributing, possessing and producing obscene material. The material in question depicts gruesome murders, torture, sexual abuse, assaults and necrophilia --- all with young female
Remy Couture received the verdict after two days of jury deliberation at a Montreal courthouse. He told reporters:
It's like a 400-pound weight has been lifted. It's been the most stressful thing I've ever had to go through in my life.
Couture said the ruling means he can continue to create his art, without infringement on his right to free expression.
During the trial, Couture argued his gory works, roughly a thousand images and two short videos that appeared on Couture's website, Inner Depravity , should be considered art. The website was part of a personal project by Couture designed
to raise the bar of his make-up and special effects work. Couture, who is self-taught, sought to bring a psychopathic killer character of his own making to life. Couture described it as a sort of fake diary of a serial killer, complete
with his own universe inspired by horror movies and literature.
All of the works were staged with willing actresses and a combination of fake blood, latex and silicone to create life-like, horrific images. Couture testified the reason behind the work was to highlight his skills and abilities as a master of
special effects horror and that the goal is to make his work look believable.
Defence experts testified that Couture's work was in line with other similar work in the genre. A university cinema professor testified that what was acceptable in the genre had changed greatly over the span seven decades.
The artist told reporters that he was approached by a police detective about a pleading out and getting an absolute discharge in the case, but Couture has said that he went ahead out of principle. He said that pleading guilty or settling could
set a dangerous precedent and raise questions about other kinds of work done by artists.