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S.F. No. 2554 - Identifying Connections Between Pornography and Sex Trafficking; Increased Penalty Assessment for Prostitution-Related Crimes
Author: Senator Michelle R. Benson
Prepared By: Chris Turner, Senate Fiscal Analyst (651/296-4350)
Date: March 6, 2018


This bill expands the information on human trafficking collected by the Department of Public Safety to include arrest, prosecution, and conviction data for crimes involving minors and pornography.  The bill further expands the penalty assessment currently applied to certain prostitution-related crimes.

Section 1 expands the crimes on which the Department of Public Safety must gather statistical data to include the following:

  • Section 617.247 (possession of pornographic work involving minors); and
  • Section 617.293 (harmful materials; dissemination and display to minors prohibited).

This section also requires the human trafficking study to assess the manner in which pornography supports trafficking by contributing to demand, grooming or training victims, and creating additional revenue streams for traffickers.

Section 2 expands the prostitution-related crime penalty assessment to a number of new crimes.  Under current law, when a person commits certain prostitution-related crimes, the court imposes an assessment of between $500 and $1,000 in addition to any fine.  The money is divided between the local political subdivision (40% to be used for combating the sexual exploitation of youth), the prosecuting agency (20% also to be used in relation to combating the sexual exploitation of youth) and the safe harbor account (40%).  The changes to this section add several new offenses to the list of crimes for which an assessment must be impose: 

  • Section 609.27 (coercion);
  • Section 609.282 (labor trafficking);
  • Section 609.33 (disorderly house);
  • Section 617.293 (harmful materials; dissemination and display to minors);
  • Section 609.283 (unlawful conduct with respect to documents in furtherance of labor or sex trafficking);
  • Section 609.352 (solicitation of a child);
  • Section 617.246 (use of minors in a sexual performance); and
  • Section 617.247 (possession of pornographic work involving minors).


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