WASHINGTON -- In a ruling casting doubt on the validity of laws in 42 states, the Supreme Court yesterday struck down a New York law preventing criminals from profiting from tales of their misdeeds.

Ruling 8 to 0, the court said New York's so-called Son of Sam lw, which requires proceeds from books or other works detailing crimes to be turned over to a victims' fund, violates the Constitution's free-speech guarantees.

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