The Video Software Dealers Assn. has launched “Project: Rental Return,” a state legislative drive to update theft statutes to cover unreturned video rentals.

Although VSDA spokesman Rick Karpel said he was unable to give specific hard data on the problem, he noted, “It’s a constant source of aggravation to retailers.”

Only South Carolina has an existing statute that identifies rental video theft as a separate crime.

The VSDA will work through its regional chapters and through individual retailers to get the state laws changed.

In order to get a “theft of video rental property” law passed, VSDA will send interested parties a kit that includes a model statute, detailed explanation of the legislation, procedural advice and a survey of existing state statutes.

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