Lawyers for gay couple whose wedding photo was used in attack mailers fighting free speech claims

Couple's photo used in anti-gay marriage mailers

DENVER - Attorneys for a New Jersey gay couple whose engagement photo was used in Colorado political attack mailers are urging a federal court to let a lawsuit go forward, despite claims that use of the picture is protected free speech.

"They are not celebrities or public figures or emblems of the gay-rights movement. They did not insert themselves into Colorado politics," attorneys with the Southern Poverty Law Center said in a court filing in Denver federal court Monday.

The Southern Poverty Law Center said Monday that 32-year-old Brian Edwards and 37-year-old Tom Privitere are "innocent bystanders" whose copyrighted picture was stolen and misused. 

Virginia-based Public Advocate of the United States used photos of the couple holding hands and kissing to target candidates in Colorado Republican primaries this year.