MONTGOMERY, Ala. (WALA) - Attorney General Luther Strange has joined a bi-partisan national coalition of 49 Attorneys General calling on Congress to amend the law to help fight prostitution and child sex trafficking.
In a letter to key members of Congress, the Attorneys General advocated that Congress amend the Communications Decency Act to provide criminal jurisdiction to state and local prosecutors.
According to Attorney General Strange, the Communications Decency Act of 1996 was drafted when the internet was in its infancy. The original purpose of the Act was to protect children from accessing indecent material online, but courts have interpreted certain provisions of the Act to provide immunity from State prosecution to online classified ad sites, such as Backpage.com , that promote and profit from human trafficking.
Prostitution is a local crime. Absent interstate travel, federal property, or the involvement of a minor, prostitution is not a federal crime. While the Communications Decency Act provides criminal authority to the federal government, the Attorneys General believe that criminal jurisdiction needs to be extended to help combat these crimes.
"Federal law needs to be modernized to provide local prosecutors the tools to strike back against those who use technology to promote sexual exploitation of children," Attorney General Strange said.
Local prosecutors report that prostitution solicitations have largely moved online. Backpage.com, for example, generates an estimated $3 million to $4 million per month in revenue.
The NAAG letter can be found here: http://www.ago.alabama.gov/File-20130723-CDA-Sign-On-Letter
The trial for Giuseppe Pino LoPorto continues today in Baldwin County. LoPorto, now 80-years-old, faces several sex abuse charges against a child dating back to the early 90s.
FOX10 News has learned William "Eddie" Patrick, captain of Mobile's First police precinct, has been demoted following an internal investigation.
A man who bought a bicycle three weeks ago finds out it was originally stolen, according to the original owner who reported it missing in October.
If you were in the Foley area Thursday, you may have seen a helicopter, police and K-9 units. That’s because a store in Foley was robbed this morning at gunpoint. Eventually, the search was called off. The suspect is still on the loose.
Pastor of Lifeway Community Church Mike McPherson says thieves stole presents that would have been given to needy children.
Skies are mostly clear and the breezy north wind is very noticeable this evening. Daytime highs were only in the mid 50’s today. We are expecting a light freeze tonight along and north of I-10. Lows will be near 32 degrees in Mobile. Upper 20’s are possible well inland.