The Supreme Court agreed April 26 to decide whether California and six other states can forbid the sale to minors of violent video games that show images of humans being maimed, killed, or sexually assaulted, reports the Los Angeles Times. California’s law, like all the others, has been blocked based on a free-speech challenges lodged by the video gaming industry. But in something of a surprise, the high court said it would hear California’s appeal and consider reviving the laws. The move came less than a week after the justices, in a 8-1 ruling, struck down a federal law on free-speech grounds that made it a crime to sell videos of illegal acts of animal cruelty. Based on last week’s ruling, the justices might have been expected to deny California’s appeal and allow the law to expire. Other states that have enacted laws similar to California’s include Illinois, Michigan, Minnesota, Louisiana, Oklahoma, and Washington. The justices will hear the case of Schwarzenegger v. Video Software Dealers in the fall…

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staff and wire services reports