City works to close loopholes that allow XXX shops in neighborhood

New York - (NBC) - A New York judge has sided with the city in its fight to close a legal loophole that allows some sex shops to operate in residential neighborhoods.

The ruling opens the way for the city enforce "60/40" rules enacted in 2001 under former Mayor Rudy Giuliani.

Zoning regulations limit where many sex-oriented businesses can operate, but the rules don't apply if at least 60 percent of the business is devoted to non-adult items.

"No matter how many copies you have of Disney's 'Bambi' on the bookshelves If you've got a peep show you're an adult store," said Jonathan Feinblatt, the city's criminal justice coordinator.

The city says some X-rated enterprises made only "sham" efforts to comply with the 60 percent rule so they could avoid the zoning rules. Selling things like "marital aids" and lingerie which counted as non-adult products, along with a few Kung-Fu movies and Westerns hidden in the back of the store.

"I have a daughter and anytime I bring her out here the first thing I do is keep her away from questions like this," said Duane Clark, who lives in the Bronx.

One store that's seen it all and outlasted several mayors is "Come Again" on Manhattan's Eastside. The erotic boutique has been following the rules for more than 30 years.

"We sell some porn, but very little," says owner Helen Wolff.

Wolff sells bondage equipment, erotic toys and role playing costumes. She says she's stayed open because she "doesn't sell sex, she sells things that lead to sex."

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