Article by: Rachel N. Busick

42 PEPP. L. REV. 333 (2015)

Like the Thirteenth Amendment, which made slavery punishable by law, additional statutes that protect victims and punish those involved in sex trafficking are needed in the United States to abolish modern-day slavery. This Comment focuses specifically on California’s laws relating to sex trafficking for two reasons. First, California’s laws fail to adequately address the demand for sex trafficking. Second, California has a unique relationship to pornography, which is intrinsically linked to sex trafficking. Throughout this Comment, victims are referred to as women and children, and buyers are referred to as men, because that is true in the majority of cases; nevertheless, men are also victims and women may also be buyers. Part II explains the definition and realities of sex trafficking with a special focus on buyers creating demand for sex trafficking. Part III discusses the current state of both the United States federal law and California state law by examining existing human trafficking statutes and applicable case law. Part IV analyzes the impact of California law on sex trafficking and the need for California to address demand. Part V suggests ways California can amend its human trafficking and pandering statutes to better address the demand for sex trafficking. Part VI concludes.

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