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5 Questions Answered About Child Trafficking

5 Questions Answered About Child Trafficking

What is Child Trafficking?
Child Trafficking is a type of kidnapping that involves the unwilling abduction of children with the intention of conducting the illegal sale – and exploitation – of the kidnapped children; Child Trafficking can result in human slavery, child prostitution, or other additional avenues of human exploitation. While human trafficking is considered to be catchall term with regard to this criminal activity, Trafficking statistics state that over 50% of the victims of Human Trafficking are children. 
What are Some Important Child Trafficking Statistics?

Child Trafficking does not result merely in forced labor or slavery; in certain cases, children victimized by Child Trafficking are subjected to sexual slavery and exploitation occurring within a variety of countries and nations:
50% of victims of human trafficking are listed as children; this statistic illustrates that maintain that upwards of 1 million children are subjected to sexual slavery and exploitation
Child Trafficking is considered to be an ongoing and growing predicament; Child Trafficking statistics show that Child Trafficking has been recorded to render upwards of $30 billion on an annual basis – in addition, international Child Trafficking has been listed as affecting almost 200 countries and nations worldwide
Within these nations listed as being affected by Child Trafficking, Child Trafficking statistics released have recorded upwards of 15,000 human being trafficked into the United States for both sexual slavery, as well as forced servitude
The victims of Child Trafficking are considered to range in both gender and ages; while forced prostitution and exploitation continue to affect millions of individuals, females are reported to comprise upwards of 80% of the victims of subjected to child trafficking
Child victims of Child Trafficking have been reported as comprising upwards of 20% of the victims of child prostitution – this figure is considered to amount to upwards of 2 million children victims


What is the Difference Between Kidnapping and Abduction?

Although situations within the criminal activity of Child Trafficking exist where the terms ‘kidnapping’ and ‘abduction’ may be used interchangeably, the associated charge within child trafficking offenses is primarily kidnapping. The distinction between the terms is the presence of willingness expressed by the victim; however this is not applicable to Child Trafficking offenses due to the fact that the act of the removal of children – who are not classified as able to provide for such expressed legal consent – is a crime. 
Does Modern Day Slavery Occur?
Unfortunately, forced human enslavement – both through threat or exploitation – still occurs in modernity; the devastation that Child Trafficking and forced slavery fosters is considered to be the ultimate violation of human agency and freedoms. Child Trafficking is not only considered to be in direct violation of a child’s rights, but also serves to result in a multitude of both long-term and short-term trauma and devastation suffered by child victims. Child Prostitution is defined as an activity that entails individuals engaging in sexual activity with a minor; as a result of children’s rights, any type of sexual activity involving a minor is considered to be inappropriate, criminal, and unethical. 

How Can I Report Child Trafficking?

In the event that you have been made aware of a child trafficking offense, you are encouraged to contact the National Child Trafficking Resource Center immediately by contacting them via telephone: (888) 373-7888.

4 Questions Answered About Child Prostitution

4 Questions Answered About Child Prostitution

What is Child Prostitution?
Child Prostitution is an illicit, illegal, and unethical criminal activity that entails the forced engagement of children or minors in sexual activity for economic gain. Prostitution undertaken by individuals legally classified as adults is also considered to be a crime within locations not permitting that practice; prostitution is considered to be dually-illegal resulting from both a prostitution charge, as well as solicitation charge:
However, the egregious nature of Child Prostitution not only encompasses the illegality of prostitution, which includes the inherent dangers and risks, but Child Prostitution offenses involve the exploitation and manipulation of children – these types of offenses place children in damaging situations on both physical and emotional levels
Furthermore, the repercussions of Child Prostitution far surpass the immediate dangers resulting from this heinous crime; oftentimes, children subjected to the forced engagement in Child Prostitution will undergo a vast array of troubles and trauma later in life


What Some Facts About Child Prostitution?

Although the unethical nature and latent illegality is inherent within acts of Child Prostitution, the structure of the Child Prostitution industry compromises the safety and wellbeing of children in a multitude of methods. Primarily, the inclusion of children within any criminal activity is considered to be a direct violation of the rights of children; however, the wide range of criminal and illicit nature is voluminous with regard to Child Prostitution:
The average age at which children are forced to engage in Child Prostitution is 13 years of age; although both males and females are subject to Child Prostitution, females are the primary victims of this crime
The connection between child abuse and Child Prostitution is observable; upwards of 60% of victims of Child Prostitution have been reported as victims of incest – upwards of 80% of victims of child abuse have reported being abused 
In addition to the deplorable actions suffered upon them, child victims of Child Prostitution have reported to be shown pornography by their captors – the engagement in the viewing of pornography has been reported to take place upwards of 30% in every individual circumstance
What is Considered to be the Most Damaging Aspect of Child Prostitution?
Although the institution of Child Prostitution is considered to be one of the most grievous and heinous, the afflictions and trauma undergone by child prostitutes is oftentimes unimaginable despite reports and portrayals of the evils of this industry; the following facts illustrate the true evil and devastation inherent within this criminal institution:
Upwards of 90% of children subjected to Child Prostitution have reported to be victims of rape; these reports have indicated both clients and facilitators of an individual Child Prostitution operation as perpetrators
The mortality rate within the Child Prostitution industry is considered to be almost 50% higher than the median average of mortality with regard to children; in addition to the 75% of child prostitutes who have reported being victims of physical abuse, Child Prostitution suicide rates reach almost 20% with regard to the median mortality
How Can I Report a Child Prostitution Offense?
In the event that you have been made aware of Child Prostitution taking place, you are encouraged to contact the National Human Trafficking Resource Center immediately; you can do so by contacting them via telephone: (888) 373-7888.

Prostitution

Prostitution

What is Prostitution?


Prostitution is defined as a criminal act that includes thetrade, barter, or exchange of sexual acts with the hopes of the receipt of economic gain or opportunity. The sexual acts expressed within legislation addressing the act of Prostitution can include copulation, stimulation, copulation, or intercourse. The notion of ‘gain’ expressed in the definition of Prostitutionmay vary in its classification, due to the fact that the implicit nature of any ‘gain’ will itself varywith regard to personal circumstance case-by-case basis. While the nature of products or services exchanged within the activity of Prostitution will vary, the qualification of Prostitution is contingent in a commercial exchange for sexual favor(s).

Types of Prostitution


Akin to the varied definition of ‘gain’, the varied methodology and facilitation exists within the classification of Prostitution; the following are common forms of Prostitution:
Human trafficking is defined as illegal transport of human beings with the expressed intent of engaging and arranging forced sexual activityin the form of Prostitution; this type of Prostitution can involve victims ranging from adults to children
Brothels are commercially-based criminal operations in which the clandestine facilitation of Prostitution occurs within a structured and organized commercialized endeavor
Child Prostitution is a type of Prostitution that involves individuals classified minors within the legal spectrum; these individuals are considered to be below the age of consent to engage sexual activity; Prostitution through the facilitation of children is considered to be one of the foremost egregious crimes that an individual can commit – a child Prostitution can exist in tandem with child abuse, child molestation, and the endangerment of a child’s welfare
 
Legal Terminology Associated with Prostitution


The following legal terminology is commonly associated upon the mention ofProstitution:
Solicitation
Within the scope of a Prostitution charge, Solicitation is defined as the interpersonal criminal act involvinga solicitorwho presents an opportunity or prospect to another individual – or individuals. Within the expressed solicitation of Prostitution, Prostitution can be defined as the intention proposition to participate in sexual activity resulting in the illegal and unlawful exchange of goods, services, or monies; Due to the fact that prostitution is rooted in Solicitation, an individual can be charged with prostitution regardless of participation in any actual sexual activity

Entrapment


Entrapment is the criminal act of soliciting the participation of an individualwithin the prospect of criminal activity in order to incriminate them upon agreement rather than indict them for a charge relating to the actual criminal activity in question. Within the scope of Prostitution, the actual solicitation must present itself in a manner that presents the notion that an individual acted on their own behalf in lieu of a manufactured circumstance
What Dangers are Latent within Prostitution?


Since Prostitution is deeply-rooted and facilitated within sexual activity, it is considered to be contributory to a variety of negative outcomes that include the spreading of disease, physical harm, and accidental – and unplanned – pregnancy. Due to the fact Prostitution is a crime, the methods of personal protection undertaken by prostitutes is typically illegal in its construct, as well; prostitutes are oftentimes exploited by those patronizing their services, as well as threatened by individuals colloquially known as ‘pimps’, who demand illicit fees for spurious protection provided.

Statutory Rape

Statutory Rape

Statutory rape occurs when an individual engages in sexual acts or intercourse with a minor. The age of consent will vary from state to state, though it is typically between the ages of 16 and 17. Even if the minor provided for his/her consent to engage in sexual activity, it will still be considered under the law as statutory rape. 
 
 
Regardless of the actual maturity level of the child, it is considered that any person under the age of consent to not be able to rationally decide to engage in sexual intercourse in the context of the law. The situation of statutory rape will also be more complex if a man impregnating a minor is the situation at hand. A man impregnating a minor is seen, under the eyes of the law, to impose a very trying and complex situation on the minor. Statutory rape laws exist as a way to punish those that take advantage of minors in a sexual way, regardless if the act itself was consensual.
 
 

Bill Proposed to Stop Sexual Harassment in VA Hospitals

Bill Proposed to Stop Sexual Harassment in VA Hospitals

 

In the nation's Veteran's Administration hospitals, a dark secret is lurking.  VA statistics show that hundreds of sexual assaults, including rapes, forcible medical examinations, and inappropriate touching, occur in hospitals for veterans each year. A bill recently proposed in the House of Representatives, H.R. 2074, would use several strategies to ensure that service members are protected from sexual assaults and have ways to report any assaults that do occur.

According to studies conducted by SWAN, the nation's largest organization advocating for female members of the U.S. armed services and female veterans, women have recently been using VA health care rather than private health care in record numbers since returning home from missions in Iraq and Afghanistan.  However, this uptick in VA use may not be good for the women involved: studies have shown that sexual assault survivors receiving services from the VA are significantly less satisfied than those who receive healthcare from private providers.

SWAN runs a helpline for female armed services members who have been subjected to sexual assault, discrimination, or harassment.  According to testimony from SWAN's policy director, women have reported extreme incidents of sexual assault and harassment.  In one case, a veteran's psychiatrist raped her but the veteran was told that her word alone could never lead to the psychiatrist being disciplined in any way.

In another VA hospital, a technician has been reported repeatedly for sexually inappropriate conduct.  A police officer at the facility reports that the technician has been reported to his employer repeatedly but continues to work in his technician capacity, in close proximity to female patients even after being accused of rape at least twice.

If H.R. 2074 becomes law, the VA would be required to implement a comprehensive reporting system for rapes and other types of sexual assault.  The law would also track incidents of sexual assault and sexual harassment at VA hospitals so that the VA could develop a better understanding of where problems were occurring and how to stop sexual assault in the future.

Currently, reporting sexual assaults can be confusing and difficult for female veterans.  In many cases, women report that their complaints are not taken seriously.  In some situations, women have even been retaliated against because they made complaints about sexual harassment or assault.  Having a consistent reporting system could lead to complaints being addressed more promptly and with more significant consequences for sex offenders caught assaulting patients or staff at VA hospitals.

Source: House.gov

Fornication

Fornication

Fornication in the U.S. Legal System
Fornication is a term for consensual sexual intercourse that is done between two people who are not married to each other. The term fornication often has religious or moral implications of many because of its association to religions and certain cultural values. Its meaning does vary between different societies, cultures, and religions.
Under common law, fornication was unlawful sexual intercourse that took place between a man and an unmarried woman, regardless of the marital status of the man. In the case that the woman was married, it would not be fornication but rather adultery. On a more modern basis, the term fornication tends to be replaced with secular terms such as sex before marriage, extramarital sex, or premarital sex.
Acts of fornication, such as adultery or premarital sex are usually looked at as private issues as long as they are between heterosexuals who are consenting and are at the age of consent. In these situations, these acts are usually prosecuted by common law as criminal offenses. 
However, 16 different American jurisdictions from eastern and southern had passed various statutes against fornication. However, they were eventually repealed, struck down by courts, or are now not enforced. For jurisdictions where fornication is not enforced, the idea behind it is that fornication is a victimless crime, thus there is no reason to prosecute the individual accused of the offense.
When looking at modern-day legislation, a situation where one of individuals engaging in sexual intercourse is already in a legal marriage to another third party, this is still considered adultery. Some statutes in different jurisdictions also declare that a married woman makes the act adultery to both parties regardless of whether the man is married or not.
Typically, penalties for fornication are very rarely enforced. In the case that the laws are enforced, it is typically done through imprisonment, a fine, or a combination of both. An example of this was in November of 1996 where an Idaho prosecutor brought forth fornication charges. They were set against a teenage couple as an effort to reduce teen pregnancy.
Some acts of fornication are placed under sodomy, which means they are prohibited under certain criminal laws. However, the 2003 Supreme Court decision of Lawrence v. Thomas made all these sodomy laws unconstitutional. Furthermore, it implies that acts between two unrelated adults that are consensual, private, and non-commercial cannot be controlled by law, including any laws against fornication. This is because controlling them by law would hurt the citizen’s right to privacy and liberty. 
However, fornication can still be considered an element of many other of sexual offenses including incest, rape, or seduction.

Sexting Laws

Sexting Laws

 

What are sexting laws?

Introduction

Sexting is the act of an individual (usually a minor) sending an explicit message or image electronically.  The term is amalgamation of “sex” and “texting” reflecting its roots in irresponsible text messaging.  However, the term now refers to the distribution of these messages and images through any electronic means such as email, instant messaging and social networking.  The widespread acceptance and prevalence of sexting among teenagers and young adults is cause for concern for many adults and legal experts alike.

What are the dangers of sexting?

The ever present danger of sexting is that materials shared between two or more individuals may inevitably end up in the hands of others, either through careless or malicious actions on the part of the original party.  The material in question can be used for blackmail and other means of gaining leverage on an individual depicted in the explicit material.  The advent of digital photography and webcam transmissions for home use has also made the creation of explicit material far easier for minors and which leads to the material in question to be easily reproduced.

Especially for minors, age may become a factor and child pornography statues may be considered, even if the individual possessing the material is also a minor.  This is a felony crime and could subject the offender to a lifetime on the sex offender registry.  Some lawyers and legal experts have since campaigned to excuse minors from these charges or to lessen the charges to a misdemeanor.  No federal remedy has yet to be prescribed that would standardize the legal penalty for the creation, transmission or possession of explicit material between minors.

How prevalent is sexting?

Studies have shown that at least a quarter to a third of teenagers and young adults have sent explicit photos of themselves and more than half have sent suggestive or explicit text messages to another individual.

How has sexting law been applied in court?

South Riding, Virginia – Ting Yi Oei, an assistant principal at Freedom High School investigated allegations of sexting among the students.  He discovered one lewd, but non-explicit photo on a student’s phone.  He was instructed to save the photo as evidence although the investigation was inconclusive.  Local law enforcement became involved after a complaint from a parent and they also concluded the picture to be non-explicit.  This did not stop an overzealous prosecutor from filing charges against Oei for misdemeanor failure to report child abuse for not notifying the parents of the girl in the photo (although he was unaware of her identity)

After refusing to resign, the prosecutor dropped the misdemeanor charge and upgraded the charges to possession of child pornography, a felony offense punishable by five years in prison.  The prosecutor continued to add charges to the case including contributing to the delinquency of a minor.  Oei’s lawyer was finally able to get the charges dropped after proving that the nudity in the photo, which was not explicit, did not make the image pornography.  

Still Oei’s reputation has been tarnished by the ordeal.  Overzealous prosecutors following a loose interpretation of child pornography laws have filed charges on multiple occasions against adults and children alike for procession of lewd material depicting a minor.

Wyoming County, Pennsylvania – The American Civil Liberties Union helped three teenage girls file federal suit against a local prosecutor that threatened to prosecute them under child pornography law.  Explicit photos of the girls were found on cell phones belonging to other students at their school, which promoted the prosecutor, District Attorney George Skumanick Jr to investigate.  Under PA state law, possession of child pornography carries a felony sentence of seven years and registration as a sex offender for 10 years.

The prosecutor defended his actions by claiming that he has offered the parents of the girls an alternative, to force the girls into six months of probation with drug testing.  The parents refused and the ACLU stepped in, charging the prosecutor with violating the girl’s civil rights.  The suit filed by the ACLU disputes that the images are pornography as neither sexual activity or genitalia are depicted in the pictures.  They also argued for a violation of the fourteenth amendment which reserves a parent’s right to raise their child by trying to force the girls into a mandatory education program.  The ACLU won an injunction against the further prosecution of the case in the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit and the prosecutor was voted out of office. (Mitchell v. Miller)

Prosecutors across the country have charged teens with varying degrees of child pornography production, distribution and possession which many legal experts believe is a gross distortion of a law meant to protect minors from predatory adults.  The charge usually result in community service and not felonies, but momentum has grown to absolve teenagers from prosecution under child pornography laws altogether.  

Atlanta, Georgia – In some cases, the debate over sexting has led to other debates over underage sex between consenting minors.  Genarlow Wilson spent two years in jail after being videotape as a seventeen year old having oral sex with a minor.  The Georgia Supreme Court overturned the conviction which signifies changing attitudes about teen sexuality and consent.  This legal thinking is gradually seeping into sexting laws as there is a growing consensus that minors cannot be tried by pornography laws intended for adults.

What are lawmakers doing regarding sexting laws?

Some state representatives in Connecticut, Vermont, Ohio, Utah and New York have introduced bills and legislation in their respective legislative bodies that would lower the penalty for minors down to a misdemeanor.  Other bills, such as one introduced in Vermont would legalize sexting between two individuals but would bar further distribution of the material.  For other jurisdictions, the law remains vague and subject to the judgment of prosecutors, most of whom file charges to teach the offenders a lesson but enforce lesser punishments, such as probation.

List of Federal Political Sex Scandals in the United States

List of Federal Political Sex Scandals in the United States

 


The list of federal political sex scandals in the United States is huge, and documented scandals go as far back as 1796.  Some sex scandals have received more media attention than others, and the list of federal political sex scandals in the United States listed below consists of scandals that have received most media attention in the last couple of decades. 

 

Mark Sanford, 2009

The former South Carolina governor stopped answering his phone and responding to emails on June 18, 2009.  There were several rumors about his whereabouts, but he told a reporter he’d been in Buenos Aires when he arrived to the airport in Atlanta.  He eventually made an announcement to the media that he was visiting another woman in Argentina and publicly apologized to his wife and children.  He announced he would resign from the Republican Governors Association after the scandal. 

 

John Ensign, 2009

Ensign admitted that he had an affair with Cindy Hampton from 2007 to 2008.  She was wife of Doug Hampton, who worked Ensign’s Senate Office.  Doug Hampton sent a statement to the Fox News that claimed he was dismissed after the affair, and Ensign eventually admitted to the affair. 

 

David Vitter, 2007

Senator Vitter’s number was found on a list owned by the “D.C. Madam.”  Hustler Magazine found Vitter’s number, and they contacted him.  He made a statement the next day and admitted to the sex scandal.  He was strong advocate of abstinence-only education and had similar conservatives views. 

 

Kwame Kilpatrick, 2008

Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick and city official Christine Beatty were accused of having a sexual relationship, and both parties denied the claims in court.  Kilpatrick eventually admitted to the affair and was ordered to spend four months in jail for obstruction of justice.

 

Larry Craig, 2007

Idaho Senator Larry Craig was arrested at the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport after he gestured lewd behavior to an undercover officer in a bathroom.  He pleaded guilty and announced he would resign after his term. 

 

Barney Frank, 1989

Barney Frank was the first openly gay member of the House of Representatives.  Frank was accused of having sex with a male prostitute named Steve Gobie, and he even let Gobie live at his home.  Frank maintained he office. 

 

Bill Clinton, 1998

This is perhaps the biggest sex scandal on this list of federal political sex scandals in the United States.  Clinton was accused of having an affair with Monica Lewinsky.  Clinton denied that he had sex with Lewinsky, but later admitted he had sexual relations with her.  He faced impeachment but was never removed from office. 

 

Eliot Spitzer, 2008

An IRS investigation found that New York governor Spitzer transferred about $10,000 to a business called the Emperor’s Club.  It was proved he met with a call girl that charged $1,000 per hour, and he resigned from office. 

 

John Edwards, 2008

Edwards admitted that he had an affair and father a child with Rielle Hunter.  The affair occurred when his wife had incurable breast cancer in 2004.  He was indicted on six felony charges for trying to use campaign funds to cover up the affair. 

 

Anthony Weiner, 2011

Representative Weiner accidentally sent a public photo of his penis to a woman in Seattle in 2011.  He initially claimed his account was hacked, but he confessed to sending the photo on June 6, 2011.  Weiner resigned after pressure from Congress. 

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