The advocacy group California Against Slavery developed a draft of the Californian Against Sexual Exploitation (CASE) Act (California Against Slavery, 2012). The main purpose of the Act is to increase penalties for sex traffickers (Mannisto-Ichés, 2012). The CASE Act initiative is supported by the California District Attorney Association (Mannisto-Ichés, 2012).
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One of the initiatives embodied in the CASE Act is expanding the rape shield law. Thus, the act allows preventing the presentation of evidence that the human trafficking victim was involved in a commercial sex to illustrate the victim’s criminal responsibility for such conduct (Mannisto-Ichés, 2012). Furthermore, the CASE Act prevents disclosing the victim’s sexual history or history of commercial sexual conduct for the purposes of challenging the credibility of the victim’s character (Mannisto-Ichés, 2012). These provisions may have two-side effect. First, of course, they will protect the victim from criminal prosecution, and protect his or her privacy. However, it may also complicate the prosecution of sex traffickers. It may happen that the key evidence will lie in the victim’s testimony about her or his sexual conduct, which also can constitute a violation. It seems it would be more effective to guarantee the victim’s freedom from criminal prosecution in exchange for testimony about sex traffickers.
Another initiative contained in the CASE Act is to introduce a requirement for sex traffickers to register as sex offenders (Mannisto-Ichés, 2012). There is no doubt that such an amendment to the expansion of information about sex traffickers. Thus, one may observe that while the act seeks to protect the victim’s privacy, it, at the same time, aims to reduce the privacy of the sex traffickers. The recommendation to register sex traffickers seems to be reasonable, especially considering the fact that sex traffickers bring no less harm than sex offenders.
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