For Some It’s Trial-Bar First, Victims of Sex Trafficking Second

What if there was a bill that would make it easier for federal, state, and local law enforcement to prosecute sex-traffickers?

What if the bill applied to sex-traffickers in back-alley streets or back-alley websites?

What if the bill provided victims with automatic compensation, saving victims the pain and cost of a civil trial?

What if the bill had the support of law enforcement groups like: the FBI Agents Association, Fraternal Order of Police, Major Cities Chiefs Association, and National Association of Assistant United States Attorneys? Read more

Stopping Sex Traffickers Online and on our Streets

Now is the Time to Pass the Congressional House Bill, Fight Online Sex Trafficking Act of 2017 (FOSTA)

Thursday is National Human Trafficking Awareness day, to raise concern about one of the most heinous crimes occurring here and abroad. This modern-day sex slavery must be stopped.

This means that we must arm law enforcement and prosecutors with the legal tools to take actions against sex trafficking criminals.

To that end, Congressman Ann Wagner and Chairman Bob Goodlatte sponsored the Fight Online Sex Trafficking Act of 2017 (FOSTA) — legislation designed to give state, local, and federal prosecutors new ways to take down and imprison sex traffickers — whether they are selling on our streets or over the internet.

Existing laws have a complex and confusing path to prove that sex traffickers have criminal intent. FOSTA dramatically changes this dynamic.

FOSTA makes it easier for state, local, and federal law enforcement and criminal prosecutors to convict sex-traffickers by lowering the burdens of proof. FOSTA then goes further to allow sentencing of up to 25 years.

Recognizing the importance of enlisting additional enforcement resources, FOSTA allows all levels of law enforcement to prosecute criminal actors — both online and offline.

Along with putting sex traffickers behind bars, FOSTA helps victims by mandating that judges order financial recovery for victims once a criminal is convicted. This feature of FOSTA removes the need for each victim to endure the pain of protracted court battles, only to see trial lawyers walk off with a third of the lawsuit proceeds.

Instead, FOSTA mandates that all victims are paid and enables all recovery funds to go to victims, not the lawyers.

Because FOSTA is a such a powerful tool for criminal prosecution, it enjoys the supports of law enforcement across the country — including the:

Because FOSTA takes sex traffickers down and raises financial recovery for victims, FOSTA enjoys the support of victims groups like the:

You would hope that a bill like FOSTA would attract unanimous consent in Congress. Unfortunately, opposition to FOSTA is being drummed-up by trial bar lawyers who want the big payoffs that come from settling private lawsuits.

Regardless of the opposition of some self-serving trial attorneys, now is the time to pass FOSTA.

FOSTA was unanimously approved in Committee in December, so the sooner we move this bill to the House floor and through Congress, the sooner we can start sending criminals to prison and compensating victims for the horrors of sex trafficking.

This Theory - States with legislation: website inherits a selfie? States seek to fill privacy law gaps

Carl Szabo, senior policy counsel at NetChoice, an industry group that represents the interests of such companies as Facebook, Google and PayPal, said the revised legislation “balances the needs of the bereaved with the privacy interests of the account holders and the people with whom they corresponded.”

READ MORE

LA Times - With billions at stake, Supreme Court urged to revisit ruling shielding internet purchases from sales tax

“I really worry about the impact on small to mid-sized businesses. This would unleash tax collectors to pursue them all over the country. And they may not to be able to absorb the compliance cost,” said Carl Szabo, general counsel for NetChoice, a trade association for online businesses. He said small, web-based firms could face tax audits not just from 45 states, but from the thousands of municipalities with their own sales taxes.

READ MORE

Also at:

Norwalk Reflector

 

Wired - Are Tech Companies Trying To Derail The Sex-Trafficking Bill?

Although the new letter does not mention the tech industry’s role, some advocates point out that the language in the amendment closely mirrors a suggestion made by Chris Cox, a former congressman and lobbyist who serves as outside counsel for NetChoice, an advocacy group funded in part by Google. NetChoice declined to say whether Google was one of its larger donors, but noted that it has two dozen members. “We don’t speak for any one member, not do we represent any members,” spokesperson Carl Szabo, the group’s vice president, told WIRED.

READ MORE

Innovation and success must remain our economic foundation

If there is one word that could sum up the current political climate, it is frustration. And that frustration takes many forms.

There are, understandably, many Americans who feel frustrated about being left behind in the internet era, and fearful of being swamped by waves of emerging technologies.

But we also have many old-economy companies and bureaucrats who view new-economy businesses as a threat to their decades-long dominance of certain markets. And these legacy companies are doing everything they can to protect their privileged position in established markets.

READ MORE at The Hill

Plain Text - Public Comments on the FTC Privacy and Security Workshop: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

Carl Szabo at NetChoice points out that such an approach effectively creates a “guilty before proven innocent” regime, and unjustly puts the burden of proof on the accused. Furthermore, such an arrangement has already been prohibited by the Supreme Court in Spokeo v. Robins.

READ MORE

K Ten News - Why Modern Digital Estate Planning and Password Sharing Don't Mix

“Professional estate planners and clients should seek lawful, effective, and secure ways to protect their digital assets that don’t require account or password sharing,” said Carl M. Szabo, NetChoice Senior Policy Counsel. We found several companies providing estate management solutions but only one, DCS did not require account passwords,” said Szabo. “This no password solution can help estate planners avoid violating federal and state laws and website privacy policies and Terms of Service.”

READ MORE

Tucson News Now - Why Modern Digital Estate Planning and Password Sharing Don't Mix

“Professional estate planners and clients should seek lawful, effective, and secure ways to protect their digital assets that don’t require account or password sharing,” said Carl M. Szabo, NetChoice Senior Policy Counsel. We found several companies providing estate management solutions but only one, DCS did not require account passwords,” said Szabo. “This no password solution can help estate planners avoid violating federal and state laws and website privacy policies and Terms of Service.”

READ MORE