Legislature(2005 - 2006)

04/01/2005 02:09 PM JUD


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02:09:06 PM Start
02:09:14 PM HB54
02:10:07 PM HB184
02:52:15 PM HB12
03:05:42 PM Presentation on Sex Trafficking by Leslie R. Wolfe, Ph.d., President, Center for Women Policy Studies
03:45:55 PM HB148
03:56:20 PM HB101
04:13:46 PM Adjourn
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
HB 148 - TRAFFICKING OF PERSONS                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
3:45:55 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR McGUIRE announced  that the next order of  business would be                                                              
HOUSE BILL NO. 148, "An Act relating to trafficking of persons."                                                                
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  BETH KERTTULA, Alaska  State Legislature,  sponsor                                                              
of HB  148, said  that members  now have  in their  packets  a new                                                              
suggested draft from  the Department of Law (DOL)  which adds that                                                              
the conduct  would be a crime  if it involves deception,  which is                                                              
defined  in  statute.   The  suggested  draft keeps  the  language                                                              
regarding  bringing  a  person  into  the  state,  since  such  is                                                              
quantifiably  different  than  transporting  a person  within  the                                                              
state.   She offered  her belief  that most  people who  are being                                                              
brought  into the state  are from  foreign countries.   The  DOL's                                                              
suggested draft reads:                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
      "An Act relating to human trafficking; and providing                                                                    
     for an effective date."                                                                                                  
        * Section 1.  AS 11.41 is amended by adding new                                                                       
     sections to read:                                                                                                          
          Sec. 11.41.310.  Human trafficking in the first                                                                     
     degree.    (a)  A person  commits  the  crime  of  human                                                                 
     trafficking  in the first degree  if the person  compels                                                                   
     or  induces another  person  to come  to  this state  to                                                                   
     engage  in  sexual  conduct,   adult  entertainment,  or                                                                   
     labor in the  state by force or threat of  force against                                                                   
     any person, or by deception.                                                                                               
          (b) In this section,                                                                                                  
               (1) "adult entertainment" means the conduct                                                                      
               described in AS 23.10.350(f)(1) - (3);                                                                           
               (2) "deception" has the meaning given in                                                                         
               AS 11.46.180;                                                                                                    
               (3) "sexual conduct" has the meaning given                                                                       
               in AS 11.66.150.                                                                                                 
          (c) Human trafficking in the first degree is a                                                                        
     class A felony.                                                                                                            
          Sec. 11.41.315. Human trafficking in the second                                                                     
     degree.    (a)  A person  commits  the  crime  of  human                                                                 
     trafficking in  the second degree if the  person obtains                                                                   
     a  benefit  from the  commission  of  human  trafficking                                                                   
     under  AS 11.41.310,  with reckless  disregard that  the                                                                   
     benefit is a result of the trafficking.                                                                                    
          (b) Human trafficking in the second degree is a                                                                       
     class B felony.                                                                                                            
     * Sec. 2. This Act takes effect July 1, 2005.                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR McGUIRE said  that although the suggested  draft is cleaner,                                                              
she liked the  original bill's narrow definition of  labor and the                                                              
fact that it included involuntary servitude.                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  KERTTULA  offered  her  belief  that  the  current                                                              
definition of  labor already  includes involuntary servitude,  and                                                              
therefore she didn't feel it was necessary to specify it.                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
3:48:09 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
ANNE  CARPENETI,   Assistant  Attorney  General,   Legal  Services                                                              
Section-Juneau,  Criminal  Division,   Department  of  Law  (DOL),                                                              
concurred.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  McGUIRE  asked about  the  language  that is  currently  in                                                              
proposed AS 11.41.350(b)(1)(A) of HB 148 that reads:                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
     any  scheme, plan, or  pattern of  behavior intended  to                                                                   
     cause a person  to believe that, if the  person does not                                                                   
     enter  into or continue  the servitude,  such person  or                                                                   
     another person will suffer serious physical injury or                                                                      
     physical restraint;                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  KERTTULA  posited  that the  concept  embodied  in                                                              
that language is covered under the definition of "deception".                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE   GARA  referred   to  proposed   AS  11.41.315   -                                                              
regarding the  crime of human trafficking  in the second  degree -                                                              
in  the DOL's  suggested draft,  and  asked whether  it should  be                                                              
altered such  that it  would be  a crime only  if one  knew he/she                                                              
were engaging in  human trafficking; in other words,  the language                                                              
currently  has a  standard of  reckless disregard,  but should  it                                                              
instead have a standard of knowing disregard.                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE KERTTULA acknowledged that point.                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
MS.  CARPENETI explained  that  when  the legislature  requires  a                                                              
culpable  mental  state  of  reckless   disregard,  "knowing"  and                                                              
"intentional" are  also included.   Thus it  is not a  defense for                                                              
one  to  say  he/she  did  something   intentionally  rather  than                                                              
recklessly.                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  GARA said he  is concerned  that someone  could be                                                              
charged with  this crime even  if he/she  did not know  he/she was                                                              
obtaining a benefit from human trafficking.                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
MS.  CARPENETI  mentioned  that  there  are  different  levels  of                                                              
culpable mental states.                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR McGUIRE  said her concern is  that it would be  difficult to                                                              
have  to  prove   that  people  were  intentionally   obtaining  a                                                              
benefit,  and referred  to  strip  club owners  as  an example  of                                                              
those who  could claim that  they didn't  know the women  were not                                                              
there of their own accord.                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
3:53:03 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  GARA  opined that  his  suggestion  is worth  some                                                              
thought, however.                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  KERTTULA  concurred  with  Chair  McGuire,  adding                                                              
that in order to  be prosecuted, one must have known  the risk and                                                              
consciously  disregarded  it.   She opined  that  someone who  has                                                              
hired a  woman from another  country has a  duty to ask  the woman                                                              
what her situation is.                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR McGUIRE concurred,  reiterating her belief that  it would be                                                              
too hard to  prove a crime has  been committed if the  standard is                                                              
raised above reckless disregard.                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
3:54:47 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR McGUIRE  made a motion to  adopt Conceptual Amendment  1, to                                                              
replace  the  text in  HB  148  with  the language  in  the  DOL's                                                              
suggested  draft  [text  provided  previously].   There  being  no                                                              
objection, Conceptual Amendment 1 was adopted.                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
3:55:59 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE DAHLSTROM  moved to report HB 148,  as amended, out                                                              
of   committee    with   individual   recommendations    and   the                                                              
accompanying zero  fiscal notes.   There being no  objection, CSHB                                                              
148(JUD)   was  reported   from  the   House  Judiciary   Standing                                                              
Committee.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                

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