Governor Sean Parnell today thanked members of the Alaska House of Representatives for their unanimous support of his legislation to toughen penalties for sex trafficking. HB 359 makes it a crime for anyone to conspire to commit sex trafficking or human trafficking in the first degree.
"I appreciate Representative Anna Fairclough and the members of the House for their careful consideration of this important bill," Governor Parnell said. "Trafficking is a horrible crime that degrades dignity and violates the most basic human rights. This legislation will go far to protect children against exploitation and give prosecutors the needed tools to fight the problem."
HB 359 will change terminology used to describe an offender's conduct as sex trafficking rather than promoting prostitution. The bill allows the state to confiscate property used in connection with committing the crime of prostitution when the defendant commits the act with a child victim. It also allows the use of simultaneous two-way video conferencing in cases where a witness is unable to testify in a courtroom.
HB 359 now goes to the Senate for consideration.