ADVERTISEMENT

Bill would prevent prosecution of sex trafficking victims

April 17, 2021 GMT

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — A group of senators have approved a bill that would prevent prosecuting on prostitution charges anyone who is a victim of sex trafficking.

A subcommittee sent the bill to the Senate Judiciary Committee on Wednesday,

Supporters said it was time to clean up old language in the state’s prostitution laws now that there is a better understanding about how many people selling sex are often doing it against their will. The provisions would stand for any crimes that aren’t violent.

The original bill only applied to people under age 18, but the subcommittee agreed to ask to have it changed to anyone who is a sex trafficking victim.

ADVERTISEMENT

The proposal also allows anyone who was already convicted of prostitution or another non-violent crime while being coerced by someone else to ask a court to have their crimes expunged from their record.