Minneapolis lawyer suspended over 'porn trolling' lawsuits

The Minnesota Supreme Court has indefinitely suspended a Minneapolis lawyer over "porn trolling" lawsuits.

Thirty-five-year-old Paul Hansmeier built a career suing people nationwide for downloading internet porn. He can petition for reinstatement in four years.

The Minnesota Office of Lawyers Professional Responsibility asked the court last year to disbar or suspend Hansmeier. Hansmeier said his copyright lawsuits were "a very new and emerging area of practice" that protected the rights of pornography producers. But he dropped his opposition to the disciplinary proceedings.

Hansmeier also has been criticized for filing what some call "nuisance lawsuits" against small businesses that allegedly fail to comply with disability access laws.

Hansmeier tells the St. Paul Pioneer Press he's not sure he'll seek reinstatement but will continue to work on behalf of the disabled.

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