SAN DIEGO (CNS) - Assemblyman Brian Maienschein, R-San Diego, Friday introduced a bill that would allow child prostitution victims to sue those who pay them and their pimps.
The bill would also allow district attorneys, city attorneys or the state attorney general to sue both "johns" and pimps for up to $10,000 for illegal acts such statutory rape, prostitution and carnal abuse, the lawmaker said.
"It is our responsibility to protect this vulnerable population and our message is clear -- in California, child sex for hire is over," Maienschein said. "Pay to rape a child and you risk losing your home, your savings and everything you own."
Maienschein described the bill -- sponsored by the Children's Advocacy Institute at the University of San Diego School of Law -- as the first of its kind in the nation.
The amount of the penalty would be set by a judge based upon the harm to the victim and the likelihood the defendant knew the child was a minor, he said.
Maienschein said money obtained by a child plaintiff would be held in a trust fund overseen by the court until the child turns 18. Funds obtained by public officials would be used to aid comparable victims, he said.
The bill would also allow for restraining orders to be issued against pimps in the same legal action, Maienschein said.