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How Should Men Who Buy Sex With Minors Be Punished?

OPB | Aug. 28, 2014 12:06 p.m. | Updated: Aug. 28, 2014 1:48 p.m.

Photo credit: Amarand Agasi via Flickr

Photo credit: Amarand Agasi via Flickr

new report out this week by the group Shared Hope International says that the men who pay for sex with minors, known as “johns,” get little to no jail time. Founder Linda Smith says the data came from 134 cases in Portland, Seattle, Phoenix, Baltimore, and Washington D.C., mostly between 2008 and 2013. 

Smith applauds Oregon — among other states — for making the act of buying sex with a minor a felony (prior to 2013 it was a just a misdemeanor). She also points out that Portland and Multnomah County are making great strides prosecuting all aspects of child sex trafficking.

We’ll talk with Linda Smith and with Multnomah County Deputy District Attorney JR Ujifusa about how these crimes are being prosecuted and how that fits into the overall strategy for reducing child sex trafficking.


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