Sex Work

Charging Child Sex-Trafficking Victims With Prostitution Is the Only Way to Save Them, Say California Prosecutors

Without the threat of jail time, victims won't have incentive to testify, prosecutors complain.

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Under California law, anyone under age 18 who is engaged in prostitution is considered a sex-trafficking victim, regardless of whether any force or coercion is involved. Yet teens in the sex trade can also be charged under state law with committing prostitution. California legislators are trying to change this, with a bill that would prohibit the prosecution of minors for prostitution charges. But the measure has run into opposition from law enforcement officials, who say that arresting victims is integral to saving them.

The legislation, Senate Bill 1322, passed the state Senate in June and could come up for a vote in the Assembly this week, according to the San Francisco Chronicle. But it "faces a tougher vote in the more moderate Assembly," warns the Chronicle, "where some Democrats have aligned with law enforcement groups."

This includes the California District Attorneys Association, which says that without the threat of criminal sanctions, victims won't have enough incentive to testify against people the state would like to lock-up as pimps.

If prosecutors can't make a case against someone without throwing their alleged victims in jail, that sounds to me like it's prosecutors problem. But apparently California prosecutors think vulnerable teenagers should bear the brunt of their inadequacy.

Sean Hoffman, director of legislation for the district attorneys association, told the Chronicle: "If they can't keep a victim in a facility"—i.e., jail—"long enough for a provider to reach that child with services, then we undermine the efforts of a number of great community-based organizations that are having tremendous success in servicing victims of human trafficking."

Again, it doesn't really sound like these "great community-based organizations" are actually "having tremendous success" helping trafficking victims if the only way people use their services is when forced by the state, but I guess we all define success differently. If all you care about is filing bodies into your program whether they want or need help or not, then getting police to force scared teens your way is a fine recruitment tack, I guess.

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  1. Unforeseen consequence: “Don’t worry, baby, they can’t even arrest you when you’re under 18!”

    1. 2 out of 2 squirrelz agree!

      1. You know, because of Hinckley’s obsession with Jodie Foster, who was in the movie Taxi Driver, where the photo is from. Get it?

        1. I thought you were channeling Deniro’s part from the film.

          Then I realized that would mean you would’ve paid an underage prostitute for sex and then proceeded to not have sex with her.

          Hinckley, somehow, seemed more you.

  2. ENB – This article appears to have been double-posted on the H&R page.

    1. Squirrelz are interested in the subject?

      1. Evidently the squirrelz ate the Brickbat, too. Mulched wood jokes in that one. Coincidence?

      1. Just listing euphemisms I expected you sickos to use.

  3. ENB’s high school yearbook photo…awesome

    1. Who likes short shorts

    2. No, that is Jodie Foster in Taxi Driver.

      1. And people say I have no sense of humor…

        1. I never said that!

          1. and eyez peoples

        2. I said Zeb has no sense of humor. I was joking of course. I feel I need to explain that to you Tonio.

    3. ENB’s high school yearbook photo…awesome

      That was taken last week at the porn convention.

      1. Well, that’s gonna be against the law soon enough too. I’m sure more than one DA is salivating at the thought of throwing “evil” men in prison who have lovers (above the age of 18) that dress up as sexy underage school girls or something.

        1. Yeah, it’s already a thing. Some of the more “progressive” countries (UK I think) has banned naughty pictures of women with small breasts on the grounds that those are proxies for underage girls.

          1. Yea, I’ve heard rumblings (mostly among 3rd Wave asshole feminists) that if you like your lady to have a shaved snatch, ooh, you’re secretly a kiddy diddler. Of course, if you like her au naturale, your still a disgusting pervert. Fuck the world, I’m ready for the SexBot revolution.

  4. The DA’s lobby the legislators, but later they’ll say they Must follow the law as passed by the legislators. Their hands are tied.

  5. “This gonna hurt me more than….. haha no wait this is gonna hurt you”

  6. So they’re threatened by their captors and then threatened by their saviors. Twice victimized.

    1. Intentions matter.

      1. no, no , no, Black Lives Matter,… you want to get sued for copy write infringement re the use of the word matters?

  7. I see if we threaten everyone with a crime we can get them to rat out their neighbors how Orwellian of these guys

  8. But the measure has run into opposition from law enforcement officials, who say that arresting victims is integral to saving them.

    Anyone who’d hire a hooker with a criminal record would never become Pimp of the Year.

  9. “reach that child with services” = powerlessness brainwashing: “I had a pimp and he made me do it”.

  10. This is the end-game of sex trafficking laws: making a very good case for arrestees to claim compulsion. If she’s a victim, she can’t be blamed for her participation. What kind of monster are you?

    1. But aren’t we all, in some sense, victims ?

    2. Yep – turns it into a witch hunt: “I think I seen a pimp sitting in his car over there” and “Look how quiet she is, she must be scared of her pimp”.

      1. And, “You didn’t want to sell your body for sex but your pimp made you do it, right?” (As opposed to: “You’re so lonely and desperate that you’ll go gay for pay?”)

  11. “But the measure has run into opposition from law enforcement officials,”

    No shit.
    Oakland PD won’t be able to coerce the Celeste Guaps of the world into freebies.

  12. See also: Brooke Shields in Pretty Baby.

    1. I’ve had a Sazerac in the very same bar in which she was served on a platter, with sparklers.

  13. Sean Hoffman, director of legislation for the district attorneys association, told the Chronicle: “If they can’t keep a victim in a facility”?i.e., jail?”long enough for a provider to reach that child with services, then we undermine the efforts of a number of great community-based organizations that are having tremendous success in servicing victims of human trafficking.” (emphasis added)

    For fuck’s sake. Just because “child” == “minor” does not mean that “minor” != “child”. Childhood ends at puberty.

    Is it any wonder, then, that millennials need safe spaces that more resemble pre-K / daycare centers? We keep infantalizing our young people longer and longer into their lives. There was a time when teenagers were getting jobs and apprenticeships, learning trade skills, and even getting married and starting families. Now, somehow, we think, when a teenager… /gasp!!… has sex… or gets a job, that they’re “growing up too fast”. Shit! They’re supposed to grow up fast.

    1. erm… does not mean that “minor” == “child”.

      Edit button, please.

    2. It is in the vested interest of various organizations and groups to maintain a definable childhood. Just think of the programs, and funding, and all that legislation that is “for the children.”

      And all the bureaucrats that suck a living off of it. And the cause mongers.

      So they get the fucking service whether they want or need it.

      And if you have a problem with that you must hate children.

      1. It is in the vested interest of various organizations and groups to maintain a definable childhood.

        I think that is more of a symptom, but I agree, it is now a feature.

        T’was a time (before the Industrial and Technological Revolutions) when life was, arguably simpler (not necessarily better), and teenagers were actually young adults equipped with enough life skills to strike out and become productive, independent members of society. [Granted, for young women that usually meant marriage and homemaking… Blast the patriachy!!]

        Now, becoming a productive member of society for many requires, almost mandatory, 14+ years of formal, contemporary “education”. Consequently, teenagers are no longer allowed to develop into young adults. Instead, they are almost entirely dependent on their parent(s) far later into life. And, indeed, accordingly, society seems hell bent on stunting their development as long as possible creating, effectively, College-aged toddlers.

        And the progressives want to make sure that they remain dependent. If not on their parent(s), then on government…

        And if you have a problem with that you must hate children.

        Ah, damned if I do. Damned if I don’t. If I have a problem with College-aged toddlers, I hate the children. If I don’t, then I must love the children and, therefore, am a pedophile… /sigh

  14. So, the TSA, always working tirelessly to be creepy and intrusive, now asks one’s children their names. They don’t state why, but I assume it is a witch hunt for child traffickers.

    A progressive friend of our family, on their last plane trip, was worried her six year old, who is highly prone to fantasy, would give her real name to the agent. And yet she and all the other progressives I know support this new TSA duty because they fully support the battle against trafficking.

    1. There’s roughly a 40% chance my six year old girl will give her kitty cat name rather than her actual name, and a 20% chance that she will only speak in Cat.

      1. I experience this recently as well with my 7-year-old who is extremely prone to flights of fancy. I wasn’t expecting it so there was some fear that she would either answer in Cat or give her my little pony name (Pinky Pie, if you must know).

  15. “After the 3rd Circuit rejected the state’s constitutional challenge to PASPA, Christie signed a bill into law in the fall of 2014 that repealed prohibitions against sports gambling at casinos and racetracks. That tactic ? repealing prohibitions instead of approving gambling ? was seen as a way to get around the federal law.”

    Yet the 3rd circuit en banc rejected it. They’re saying the state repeal violates the US Const. How does that jibe with what’s been said about marijuana, which is that the feds can’t compel the states to make it illegal?

  16. So when do we start charging pds/the state with sex trafficking? Why is it wtong for a man to hold a sex worker hostage but fine for the state?

  17. It’s not like it’s hard to get people who actually need help to seek it, or anything.

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