Advertising of sex trafficking would be a crime under a proposal that has been unanimously passed in the state Senate. Senator Bob Onder (R-Lake St. Louis) says Missouri is seeing more and more sex trafficking.
“The St. Louis metro area is said to be among the top 20 regions for sex trafficking,” said Onder. “It’s a serious problem.”
The bill would make advertising related to sex trafficking a felony punishable by up to 20 years in prison.
Senator Gina Walsh (D-St. Louis) says that’s appropriate.
“For somebody to take over your life like that, take possession of your passport, threaten your family members. I can’t imagine being a 14-year-old girl and somebody is telling me all these things they are going to do to my family if I don’t cooperate. Of course they’re going to cooperate,” said Walsh.
Walsh says sex trafficking victims are not just young girls.
“A lot of times we forget in some of these crimes against people in domestic violence, human trafficking, young boys and adult men can be victims too,” said Walsh.
The Senate made changes to what was a House proposal so the bill now goes back to the House.