King Votes to Pull the Plug on Sex Trafficking Websites
House passes King-cosponsored “Allow States and Victims to Fight Online Sex Trafficking Act”
Washington, D.C.- Congressman Steve King announces that he voted today in favor of H.R. 1865, the “Allow States and Victims to Fight Online Sex Trafficking Act of 2017” (FOSTA). This important legislation imposes new penalties on any person who uses or operates a website in interstate commerce with the intent to promote or facilitate the prostitution of another person. Those convicted of violating the law would face possible penalties of a fine, imprisonment of up to 10 years (which can be increased to 25 years if certain aggravating circumstances are met), or both. The House passed the King-cosponsored legislation this afternoon on a vote of 388-25.
“For a long time, unscrupulous website operators have used a loophole in the Communications Decency Act of 1996 to turn a blind eye to those who are promoting prostitution,” said King. “A statute written in the early days of e-commerce was never meant to be interpreted by courts as providing legal shelter to those engaging in human trafficking online. The passage of FOSTA will empower prosecutors with the tools they need to pull the plug on internet sex traffickers.”