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Tape Decked

Pam and Tommy win sex tape suit. It's not likely, though, that they'll collect their $1.5 million judgment, since the Internet webcaster that lost the suit is out of business

Tommy Lee, Pamela Anderson | ALL TOGETHER NOW Lee and Anderson (in happier times) win porn-tape judgment
Image credit: Tommy Lee and Pamela Anderson: Fitzroy Barrett/Globe Photos
ALL TOGETHER NOW Lee and Anderson (in happier times) win porn-tape judgment

Pamela Anderson and Tommy Lee may not see eye-to-eye on much anymore, but they can both take some comfort in their long-awaited legal victory in their 1998 copyright-infringement suit against Internet Entertainment Group, which obtained the then-married couple's notorious sex video and sold it via the Web. According to Reuters, U.S. District Judge Dean Pregerson granted the ex-''Baywatch'' babe and the former Motley Crue drummer $740,000 apiece in a default judgment against IEG, whose reps failed to appear in court to defend the company.

The dispute began in 1997, when IEG obtained the video (Pam and Tommy said it was stolen from their house by a construction worker) and began selling downloadable copies online, despite an injunction sought by the couple. Eventually, the couple and IEG reached an agreement over the Web version, but then IEG began marketing a videotape, which, priced at $15, became the best-selling porn title in history. The home sales prompted the copyright lawsuit, with Anderson and Lee demanding a cut of the profits. Pregerson dismissed the suit out, on the grounds that the couple had relinquished their rights by allowing the webcasting of the tape. An appeals court overruled that decision, sending the case back to Pregerson.

Unlike Anderson's last sex-tape victory over IEG in 2001 -- a seven-figure out-of-court settlement and an agreement to destroy all the company's remaining copies of a tape showing Anderson frolicking with another hair-metal rocker, Poison's Bret Michaels -- Anderson and Lee are not likely to see a dime from IEG this time, since the company is out of business. According to E!, it's sold off most of its assets to Awesome Entertainment, which still maintains IEG's old Clublove.com site, where you can still buy the Pam and Tommy video.

Originally posted Dec 11, 2002
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