FORT WORTH (KRLD/CBSDFW.COM) – If a bill proposed by U.S. Senator John Cornyn passes, the federal government could soon be reaching out a hand to the victims of human trafficking.
The Domestic Minor Sex Trafficking Deterrence and Victims Support Act of 2011 would set up a special grant to pay for special shelters for the teenagers and young women who are forced into the sex trade.
Cornyn’s bill would also provide money for special local police training on how to identify and investigate human trafficking.
State Senator Leticia van de Putte says Texas is the number one state for human trafficking. “The majority of our women and children, who are trafficked, happen to be teenage runaways,” she explained. “That is the appalling figure. It’s a modern-day slavery.”
Van de Putte has filed a bill in the Texas legislature that would up the penalties for human trafficking in state courts. As it stands most human trafficking are prosecuted in the federal court.
In a recent North Texas sex trafficking case, Fort Worth police arrested three people accused of forcing a teen into prostitution.
At the time Sgt. Deven Pitt, with the Fort Worth Police Department, said, “We do believe there are other victims out there. We are still investigating.”
The 17-year-old victim, who is from San Antonio, came to North Texas to meet up with several individuals she had connected with online.