The state House on Tuesday passed a bill to fight sex trafficking in North Carolina
RALEIGH, NC (WECT) – The state House on Tuesday unanimously passed a bill to combat the sex trafficking trade in North Carolina. The bill already passed the state Senate, and now goes to the Governor's office to be signed into law.
Senate Bill 122, called the "Sex Trafficking/Sex Offender Registration" bill, adds human trafficking to the list of charges that could land a defendant on the state's Sex Offender Registry. Senators Thom Goolsby (R-New Hanover), Stan Bingham (R-Davidson) and E.S. Newton (R-Johnston) are the other two primary sponsors. Click here to read the entire bill.
"It received unanimous support at every turn," said Goolsby after today's vote. "There is no constituency for sex traffickers in North Carolina".
Under the bill, a conviction for trafficking a minor under the age of 18 would bring mandatory registration as a sex offender, and subject the offender to GPS tracking.
According to the North Carolina Coalition Against Human Trafficking, the state is one of the top-10 for trafficking in the United States. Among the reasons are the major highways such as I-40 & I-95, the large military presence with a transient population, a huge agricultural community, and the ports near large rural areas.
Goolsby called SB 122 "the first salvo in the war on sex traffickers". He said the bigger effort will be with SB 683, called the "Safe Harbor for Victims of Human Trafficking" bill. That bill could be brought up for debate in committee as early as this Thursday, Goolsby said. Click here to read the entire bill.
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