Extreme pornography is described by the UK Government in Part 5, section 63 of the Criminal Justice and Immigration Act 2008 as pornographic material that realistically depicts a range of sex acts that include extreme violence, bestiality and necrophilia.
The legislation was passed in May by the Westminster Parliament. Scotland and the rest of the UK originally appeared to be in the "grey zone" with the legislation applying specifically to England, Northern Ireland and Wales.
However, in an announcement last week the Scottish Executive proclaimed its intent to enact legislation that would "modernize and improve the Criminal Justice System."
The announcement includes language that extends beyond the law passed in England, criminalizing the possession of material that depicts "rape and other non-consensual penetrative sexual activity, whether violent or otherwise."
"This is nothing more than the Scottish National Party using legislation as a sop to buy support," said a spokesperson for Scotland's Consenting Adult Action Network. "In Scotland there has always been greater pressure on legislation from organized religion. The SNP has already given way to the Catholic Church on denominational schools. This is just more in the same vein, based on the calculation that few people will risk standing up in public and arguing for pornography."