Senate passes “Child Protection Act of 2012”

According to the Examiner, the Senate passed new legislature this week that will protect children who are victims of child pornography and sex trafficking.

The “Child Protection Act of 2012,” which was sponsored by Texas Senator John Cornyn, was previously passed by the House of Representatives, and now waits to be signed by President Barack Obama, making it a law.

We need to provide law enforcement with every tool they need to crack down on the most vile criminals – child sex predators and traffickers – and protect the innocent young people who fall victim to these heinous crimes. This is an issue we can all agree on, and I’m pleased Congress has passed this important measure in a bipartisan fashion,” Sen. Cornyn said.

According to, if the bill becomes laws:

The Child Protection Act of 2012 will amend the federal criminal code to impose a fine and/or prison term of up to 20 years for transporting, receiving, distributing, selling, or possessing pornographic images of a child under the age of 12.

Require a U.S. district court to issue a protective order prohibiting harassment or intimidation of a minor victim or witness if the court finds evidence that the conduct at issue is reasonably likely to adversely affect the willingness of the minor witness or victim to testify or otherwise participate in a federal criminal case or investigation.

Direct the U.S. Sentencing Commission to review and amend the federal sentencing guidelines and policy statements to ensure that such guidelines provide an additional penalty for sex trafficking of children and other child abuse crimes.

The bill allows the Director of the U.S. Marshals Service to issue an administrative subpoena for the investigation of unregistered sex offenders by the U.S. Marshals Service. Amends the PROTECT Our Children Act of 2008 to:

(1) double the amount that the Attorney General may award a non-law enforcement agency entity annually to establish and conduct training courses for National Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force Program task force members and other law enforcement officials,

(2) require the Attorney General to designate a senior official at the Department of Justice (DOJ) with experience in investigating or prosecuting child exploitation cases as the National Coordinator for Child Exploitation Prevention and Interdiction to be responsible for coordinating the development of the National Strategy for Child Exploitation Prevention and Interdiction,

(3) authorize appropriations for carrying out such strategy for FY2014-FY2018,

(4) delete a requirement that the National Internet Crimes Against Children Data System identify high-priority suspects based on the volume of suspected criminal activity, and

(5) require the Attorney General to report within 90 days after enactment of this Act on the status of the establishment of such System.


About Haley Behre

I graduated from Syracuse University in December 2011 with majors in newspaper journalism and women and gender studies. Using these majors, I aspire to become a journalist who writes about human rights issues. I have held internships at the Syracuse New Times, Dash Media PR Firm, Syracuse Post-Standard and the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press. I also had an internship at the Not For Sale Campaign Syracuse chapter, which is a non-profit organization dedicated to eradicating human trafficking. I was born in Seoul, Korea on September 30, 1990 and moved to the United States before I was one year old. When I was 8, my family and I moved to Norwich, England for three years. While I was here I was immersed into a new culture and got to experience many things other children my age do not get to. Over the three years, I visited Ireland, France and the Netherlands several times, and Belgium, Wales and Sweden once. In the winter of 2010, I got an amazing opportunity to visit Kenya for a month. This was by far the single most eye-opening experience of my life thus far. The natural beauty of the landscape and its people do not compare to anything I have seen. I currently intern for the Reporters Committee for the Freedom of the Press in the hopes of getting a full-time job at a newspaper or non-profit after.
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One Response to Senate passes “Child Protection Act of 2012”

  1. This is not the only child abuse taking place in America. Chidren are being used and abused in divorce daily:


    Children need our help. If they can be incarcerated at the age of 10, they should be able to walk down the hall and tell the Judge in Family court what they want. My daughter at 10 is so smart, she stated, “why do they call it Family court daddy, they should call it parent court, cause no on listens to us!!” Out of the mouth of babes!!

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