Melbourne: An Australian filmmaker with plans to auction off virgins in Las Vegas may have to put his venture on hold, as he could face legal trouble for human trafficking.
Justin Sisely, the filmmaker, had to move his controversial project to Las Vegas from Australia to avoid prostitution charges.
Sisely, the brain behind the new low in reality-TV, is a Melbourne-based filmmaker who plans to turn the auction into a documentary, the Daily Telegraph reported on May 10.
But according to the Las Vegas Sun, those familiar with the Nevada sex industry now say the project could be stopped if Nevada authorities find it violates human trafficking laws.
Specifically, it could challenge the US Mann Act, which prevents the transport of females across state lines for "immoral purposes".
George Flint, a lobbyist for many of Nevada’s brothels, said Sisely "could be walking into real trouble".
Sisely has spent more than a year recruiting male and female virgins willing to auction themselves on camera.
He plans to pay each virgin 20,000 dollars and they will also receive 90 percent of their sale price, with the remaining 10 percent going to the Nevada brothel where the auction will be held.
Bids will be placed online before the final auction.
Sisely held "auditions" for the auction in Sydney in 2009, using posters with "Virgins Wanted" plastered over an image of the Virgin Mary.
Sydney waitress "Veronica", 21, who plans to participate in the auction said her parents were furious when they heard about her selling herself, but said she signed up to earn money and change perceptions about sex.
"Technically I’m selling my virginity for money, technically that would be classified as prostitution, but it’s not going to be a regular thing, so in my head I can justify that I’m not going to be a prostitute," News.com.au quoted her as saying.
The project has infuriated family advocates, with Senator Steve Fielding of the Family First party branding it "absurd, ridiculous and disgusting".