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City Police May Disregard Order For New Campaign Against 'Smut'


A Cambridge anti-smut drive appeared doubtful today, in spite of a City Council order to the police department to remove "indecent and smutty" literature from local stores.

"We don't need any special order to enforce the law," declared Police Chief Patrick J. Ready yesterday. But Councillor A1 Vellucci, who introduced the order at Monday night's Council meeting, threatened to form a "vigilante committee of secret friends," to inspect stores and recommend action to the district attorney if the order is not carried out.

The Council directive was passed by a voice vote after Vellucci charged that "Harvard Square magazine stands are littered with filthy and suggestive magazines." He displayed copies of Photorama and Glamour magazines which he said he purchased after complaints from parents in Cambridge.

Chief Ready, however, said yesterday that he had received no complaints. He noted that if obscene material should be discovered, his department would either ask its removal from newstands, or recommend that the District Attorney prosecute violaters.

Cambridge Solicitor Richard D. Gerould said that he knew of no city ordinance prohibiting the sale of obscene literature, but noted that local police were required to enforce a Massachusetts statute prohibiting the sale of such material.

"I don't know how the police department is going to enforce this order," commented Councilor Joseph A. DeGuglielmo yesterday. "Mountains of that stuff come out every month and it will be hard to decide what is obscene."

Several Harvard Square newstand proprieters noted that they had never been questioned by local authorities concerning the publications which they sold. "If they tell me to take out any of my magazines, I guess I'll just have to do it," one said.

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