Grove, Caballero introduce bill to increase penalties for human trafficking

The bipartisan proposal would see human traffickers spend more time in prison and face greater fines.

Two Central Valley State Senators are teaming up to push a bipartisan measure to protect children from human trafficking. 

Senators Shannon Grove (R–Bakersfield) and Anna Caballero (D–Merced) introduced Senate Bill 1414, along with Sen. Susan Rubio (D–Baldwin Park). 


The big picture: SB 1414 would make it a felony to solicit or engage in commercial sex with a minor. 

  • Currently, those crimes would only be charged as a misdemeanor in California. 
  • Criminals also only face a maximum penalty of one year in jail and a $10,000 fine. 
  • SB 1414 would also send criminals to prison for two to four years, as well as levy up to a $25,000 fine. 

What they’re saying: “It takes two criminals to commit the crime of child sex trafficking, a buyer and a seller,”Grove said. “With the passage of SB 14, we went after the sellers and now we are going after the buyers, those who are purchasing sex from children. Anyone who pays to commit brutal crimes against children should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. With the passage of SB 1414, California is sending a very clear message – not one more child.”

  • Caballero said perpetrators need to know that California is serious about protecting children from abuse and exploitation. 
  • “The trafficking of children for sex in our state demands swift and serious consequences,” Caballero said. “We need SB 1414 to protect the vulnerable children and youth who are exploited, coerced, or sold into the sex trade and fear for their lives. I am thankful to Senator Grove for her leadership in this area and I am honored to be a joint author of SB 1414 with her to put a stop to these heinous crimes against children.”
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