Hawaii Revised Statutes
NEW LAWS SUMMARY
ACT 145 (HB240 CD 1 - Promoting Prostitution Law Reform Bill)
NOTE ON DEFINITIONS:
§712-1201 Promoting prostitution; definition of terms. In sections 712-1202 and 712-1203:
(1) A person "advances prostitution" if, acting other than as a prostitute or a patron of a prostitute, he knowingly causes or aids a person to commit or engage in prostitution, procures or solicits patrons for prostitution, provides persons for prostitution purposes, permits premises to be regularly used for prostitution purposes, operates or assists in the operation of a house of prostitution or a prostitution enterprise, or engages in any other conduct designed to institute, aid, or facilitate an act or enterprise of prostitution.
(2) A person "profits from prostitution" if, acting other than as a prostitute receiving compensation for personally-rendered prostitution services, he accepts or receives money or other property pursuant to an agreement or understanding with any person whereby he participates or is to participate in the proceeds of prostitution activity.
In summary, "advancing" or "profiting" cannot be applied to the victim of prostitution. These laws are strictly focused on pimp/traffickers or anyone who profits from prostitution (those who aid or abet), not the victim.
- Fraud (meaning essentially "lying") has been added as an alternate element of proof prosecutors may use if applicable to bring Pimp/Traffickers to justice. E.g. if the victim responded to an ad for a modelling agency which actually was a front for a prostitution scam, this would be "fraud."
- Victims of sex-trafficking who are defrauded, forced, threatened or intimidated into prostitution will receive witness protection of the "highest priority" from the state's Attorney General to facilitate prosecution of the survivor's pimp/trafficker. The penalty for this crime (Promoting Prostitution in the 1st degree) is a Class A felony of up to 20 years in prison. (Formerly, the penalty for Promoting Prostitution in the 1st degree was a Class B felony).
- Survivors who are under the age of 18 are automatically deemed victims and afforded protection as victims (no need to prove fraud, force, threat or intimidation).
- Anyone who advances or profits from prostitution (Promoting Prostitution in the 2nd degree) will be prosecuted for a Class B felony of up to 10 years in prison. (Formerly, the penalty was a misdemeanor). "Prostitutes" are exempt from the definition of "advancing" or "profiting" from prostitution so this degree of the law focuses on Pimp/Traffickers (no need to prove force, fraud, threat or intimidation, just advancing or profiting from prostitution).
- Ending the Demand for Prostitution and Sex-Trafficking: Any buyer of sex who has been arrested in Hawaii, or elsewhere, more than twice (within 10 years) for the offense of Prostitution or Street Prostitution will be prosecuted for a Class C felony offense of Habitual Solicitation of Prostitution (a penalty of up to 5 years in prison).
- Hawaii Revised Statute 712-1207 (Street Prostitution) has been amended to also include criminalizing the act of purchasing a woman's body for sex. Formerly, this law may have been unconstitutional as it only criminalized the prostituted person and not buyers (State v. Espinosa - Appellate Court Decision April 2009).
(Also note that Act 125 [SB52] which also passed the 2011 legislative session and signed by the governor requires sex-traffickers convicted of Promoting in the 1st or 2nd degree to register as Sex-Offenders with the state of Hawaii).
HB141 CD1 (Labor-Trafficking)
- Makes the offense of exploiting a person for their labor by use of (any one or combination of the following): force, fraud, extortion, unlawful imprisonment, kidnapping, sexual assault, assault, "debt bondage," withholding identification to impede the victim's mobility, threat of financial loss to the victim or the victim's family, or other form of domination or control, an offense punishable as a Class A felony (up to 20 years in prison).
- Anyone or other business that knowingly aids (or profits from) a trafficker of persons for labor will be prosecuted for a Class B felony (up to 10 years in prison).
- Affords victims restitution regardless of whether the victims has returned to his or her home country.
- Additional sentencing and extended terms may apply for those held in servitude or subject to assault or sexual assault or murder.
- Makes the non-payment of wages a Class C felony if the amount the employer owes the employee is over $2000; and a misdemeanor is the amount owed is under $2000.
- Makes the confiscation or destruction of an employee's government issued identification for the purpose of labor-trafficking, a Class C felony.
- Allows Labor-Traffickers subject to forfeiture.
- Allows law enforcement to use electronic surveillance and wire tapping to investigate Labor-Trafficking cases.
- Includes Labor-Trafficking within the definition of "Organized Crime."
-Read About Past Human Trafficking Bills &
Access the Hawaii Anti-Trafficking Task Force Reports to the State Legislature-