[JURIST] US District Judge Matthew F. Kennelly [official profile] of the Northern District of Illinois ruled [opinion text, PDF] Friday that an Illinois law restricting the sale and rental of violent or sexually explicit video games to minors is an unconstitutional restriction of free speech. The law was set to go into effect January 1 and would have been the first of its kind nationwide, imposing fines of $500 to $1,000. Democratic Gov. Rod Blagojevich [official website] said he will appeal the ruling, despite the fact that all similar laws proposed in other states have been struck down. Blagojevich signed [JURIST report] the Safe Games Illinois Act [text] in July following its passage by the Illinois Senate [JURIST report]. AP has more.