An Act To Address Human Trafficking, Sex Trafficking and Prostitution
Sec. 1. 5 MRSA §4701, sub-§1, ¶C, as enacted by PL 2007, c. 684, Pt. B, §1 and affected by Pt. H, §1, is repealed and the following enacted in its place:
(1) Aggravated sex trafficking and sex trafficking under Title 17-A, sections 852 and 853, respectively; and
(2) All offenses in Title 17-A, chapters 11, 12 and 13 if accompanied by the destruction, concealment, removal, confiscation or possession of any actual or purported passport or other immigration document or other actual or purported government identification document of the other person or done using any scheme, plan or pattern intended to cause the other person to believe that if that person does not perform certain labor or services, including prostitution, that the person or a 3rd person will be subject to a harm to their health, safety or immigration status.
Sec. 2. 17-A MRSA §852, as amended by PL 2011, c. 672, §1, is further amended to read:
§ 852. Aggravated sex trafficking
(1) Cause physical injury or death to a person;
(2) Cause damage to property, other than property of the actor;
(3) Engage in other conduct constituting a Class A, B or C crime , kidnapping or criminal restraint;
(4) Accuse some person of a crime or cause criminal charges or deportation proceedings to be instituted against some person;
(5) Expose a secret or publicize an asserted fact, regardless of veracity, tending to subject some person, except the actor, to hatred, contempt or ridicule;
(6) Testify or provide information or withhold testimony or information regarding another person's legal claim or defense;
(7) Use a position as a public servant to perform some act related to that person's official duties or fail or refuse to perform an official duty in a manner that adversely affects some other person; or
(8) Perform any other act that would not in itself materially benefit the actor but that is calculated to harm the person being compelled with respect to that person's health, safety or immigration status.
Sec. 3. 17-A MRSA §853, as enacted by PL 1975, c. 499, §1, is amended to read:
§ 853. Sex Trafficking
Sec. 4. 17-A MRSA §853-B, sub-§1, ¶A, as enacted by PL 2001, c. 383, §102 and affected by §156, is amended to read:
Sec. 5. 17-A MRSA §855, as repealed and replaced by PL 2005, c. 444, §1, is amended to read:
§ 855. Patronizing prostitution of minor or person with mental disability
Sec. 6. Maine Revised Statutes headnote amended; revision clause. In the Maine Revised Statutes, Title 17-A, chapter 35, in the chapter headnote, the words "prostitution and public indecency" are amended to read "sex trafficking, prostitution and public indecency" and the Revisor of Statutes shall implement this revision when updating, publishing or republishing the statutes.
This bill broadens the definition of "human trafficking offense" to include the Maine Criminal Code crimes of aggravated sex trafficking, sex trafficking and all other crimes in the Maine Revised Statutes, Title 17-A, chapters 11, 12 and 13 if accompanied by the withholding of government-issued immigration or identification documents or committed as part of a scheme to compel participation in prostitution or labor using specific types of threats.
The bill also makes changes in the Maine Criminal Code to address human trafficking and the subcategory of sex trafficking. Specifically it:
1. Renames the crimes of aggravated promotion of prostitution and promotion of prostitution "aggravated sex trafficking" and "sex trafficking," respectively, in order to more accurately describe the defined criminal conduct;
2. Adds a provision to the crime of aggravated sex trafficking to include a victim who suffers from a mental disability;
3. Updates language in statute concerning aggravated sex trafficking regarding the terms "narcotic" and "alcoholic liquor."
4. Amends the crime of sex trafficking to provide that a new violation after having been twice previously convicted of sex trafficking, engaging in prostitution, engaging a prostitute or patronizing prostitution of a minor, or attempts to commit those crimes or engaging in substantially similar conduct in another jurisdiction, constitutes a Class C crime;
5. Amends the crime of engaging in prostitution to permit the trial court at the time of sentencing to employ any sentence alternative authorized for a Class E crime rather than solely a fine; and
6. Amends the crime of patronizing prostitution of a minor to include the Class C crime of patronizing prostitution of a mentally disabled person.