ALAMEDA (CBS/KCBS) — A bill before the California legislature would change how sex traffickers could be prosecuted for crimes involving children.

Supporters are saying it would help protect children from being exploited for profit.

The bill’s author, East Bay Assemblyman Sandre Swanson, said that California’s current law is unreasonable and that he’s been working with prosecutors who say the wording is too vague.

Right now the law against child sex trafficking requires that force, fraud or coercion be demonstrated to prove a case.

KCBS’ Anna Duckworth Reports:

“There’s a lot of other evidence that can be entered that can help prove the child has been a victim of human trafficking,” said Swanson.

That evidence includes mental coercion and verbal threats that Swanson said traffickers use to keep children under control.

The assembly member introduced a bill this week to expand the law’s language.
It says standard of proof includes cases where a defendant caused, induced, encouraged or persuaded the victim.

“We’re trying to make sure that we show zero tolerance by making sure our laws are not ambiguous and that we can prosecute those that are using children for this modern-day form of slavery,” Swanson added.

Swanson says the changes would bring California more in line with federal child sex-trafficking laws.

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Comments (3)
  1. bandit says:

    Its about damn time we do something right for these kids. Most of them are threaten and or intimidated and they are too scared to do anything but go along. Especially if they have seen an example of what happens to them if they don’t listen. All of this should have been taken into consideration along time ago. Cmon Ca tighten up some of your laws to help people out instead of giving everyone laws with loop holes.!!!

  2. ProtectChildren says:

    Absolutely necessary. It’s ridiculous, shameful, despicable, revolting that children are sold for sex in our country and law enforcement can’t do anything about it b/c our laws protect the criminals and not the victims. You don’t need any force to control a child. They are easily conditioned.