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Human trafficking bill passes Senate

January 12, 2012

01/13/11 Members of the Senate voted 48-0 Tuesday in favor of Senator Randy Head’s legislation to toughen Indiana’s human trafficking laws. 

Senate Bill 4 makes it unlawful to arrange for a person to participate in any forced sexual act. Currently, Indiana law only prohibits forced marriage and prostitution. 

“This is a serious issue being accelerated through the General Assembly due to events surrounding the upcoming Super Bowl in February,” Head said. “I commend my fellow colleagues for passing this legislation and sending it over to the House to continue our efforts to warn traffickers to stay away.” 

Organized criminals who exploit young women and children through human trafficking gravitate to such gatherings, according to Indiana Attorney General Greg Zoeller. Currently, legal loopholes within Indiana laws could allow some forms of the human trafficking activity to go unprosecuted. 

Recently, Indiana earned a D grade from Shared Hope International—a leading sexual-trafficking awareness group—on the effectiveness of human trafficking laws within the Hoosier state. 

SB 4 moves to the full House for further action.