< Back to S. 1738 (110th Congress, 2007–2009)

Text of the PROTECT Our Children Act of 2008

This bill was enacted after being signed by the President on October 13, 2008. The text of the bill below is as of Jun 28, 2007 (Introduced).

This is not the latest text of this bill.

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Source: GPO

II

110th CONGRESS

1st Session

S. 1738

IN THE SENATE OF THE UNITED STATES

June 28, 2007

(for himself and Mrs. Boxer) introduced the following bill; which was read twice and referred to the Committee on the Judiciary

A BILL

To establish a Special Counsel for Child Exploitation Prevention and Interdiction within the Office of the Deputy Attorney General, to improve the Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force, to increase resources for regional computer forensic labs, and to make other improvements to increase the ability of law enforcement agencies to investigate and prosecute child predators.

1.

Short title; table of contents

(a)

Short title

This Act may be cited as the Combating Child Exploitation Act of 2007.

(b)

Table of contents

The table of contents for this Act is as follows:

Sec. 1. Short title; table of contents.

Sec. 2. Findings.

Sec. 3. Definitions.

TITLE I—Special Counsel for Child Exploitation Prevention and Interdiction

Sec. 101. Establishment of Special Counsel for Child Exploitation Prevention and Interdiction.

Sec. 102. Establishment of ICAC Task Force Program.

Sec. 103. Purpose of ICAC Task Forces.

Sec. 104. Duties and functions of Task Forces.

Sec. 105. National ICAC Data Network Center.

Sec. 106. ICAC grant program.

Sec. 107. Authorization of appropriations.

TITLE II—Additional measures to combat child exploitation

Sec. 201. Additional regional computer forensic labs.

Sec. 202. Enhanced authority to investigate Internet crimes against children.

Sec. 203. Additional field agents for the FBI.

Sec. 204. Immigrations and customs enforcement enhancement.

Sec. 205. Combating trafficking via the United States Postal Service.

Sec. 206. Accountability provisions for child exploitation prevention and interdiction.

Sec. 207. Truth in sentencing report.

2.

Findings

Congress finds the following:

(1)

The Internet has facilitated the growth of a multi-billion dollar global market for images and video of children being sexually-displayed, raped, and tortured, far exceeding law enforcement's capacity to respond at the Federal, State, and local level.

(2)

The explosion of child pornography trafficking is claiming very young victims. Research by the Department of Justice, the University of New Hampshire, and the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children indicates that among those arrested for possession of child pornography, 83 percent have images of children 6-12 years old, 39 percent have images of children 3-5 years old, and 19 percent have images of children under the age of 3 years old.

(3)

The images and videos being trafficked typically depict sexual assaults that are both graphic and brutal. The same research indicates that 80 percent of known child pornography possessors have images of children being sexually penetrated and 21 percent have images depicting children bound, gagged, blindfolded, or otherwise enduring sadistic sex. Just 1 percent restricted their collecting to images of simple child nudity.

(4)

Millions of American children and teens are at risk from sexual predators who are hunting, stalking, and luring minors online. Along with the incredible access to the world offered our children by the Internet, the Internet also offers the world access to our children.

(5)

The Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force program (ICAC Program) of the Department of Justice has identified millions of child pornography transactions involving images and video of child sexual assault from millions of computer IP addresses worldwide.

(6)

The ICAC Program has been highly successful in creating and sustaining an emerging national network of 46 Federal, State, and local task forces, which form the backbone of America's national readiness to combat child exploitation.

(7)

In testimony before Congress, law enforcement experts have expressed consensus that lack of dedicated forensic analysis capacity is a severe problem at the Federal, State, and local level, severely limiting the number of predators that can be interdicted and children that can be identified and rescued.

(8)

The Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Department of Immigrations and Customs Enforcement, and the United States Postal Inspection Service have each developed highly specialized and successful child exploitation investigative capabilities, yet these agencies have testified to Congress that they must triage the overwhelming number of child exploitation crimes and cannot investigate a large percentage of known crimes.

(9)

Child pornography and online child enticement crimes have among the highest conviction rates of any child sexual offense, and the Department of Justice funded research indicates that the majority of child pornography offenders have committed or attempted direct sexual contact offenses against children. Investigating and prosecuting these predators is thus one of the most concrete and measurable strategies for the prevention of future child sexual abuse.

3.

Definitions

In this Act, the following definitions shall apply:

(1)

Child exploitation

The term child exploitation means any conduct, or an attempt or conspiracy to commit such conduct, constituting criminal sexual abuse of a minor, sexual exploitation of a minor, abusive sexual contact of a minor, sexually explicit conduct with a minor, or any similar offense under Federal or State law.

(2)

Minor

The term minor means any person under the age of 18 years.

(3)

Sexually explicit conduct

The term sexually explicit conduct has the meaning as in section 2256 of title 18, United States Code.

I

Special Counsel for Child Exploitation Prevention and Interdiction

101.

Establishment of Special Counsel for Child Exploitation Prevention and Interdiction

(a)

In General

The Attorney General shall appoint a Special Counsel for Child Exploitation Prevention and Interdiction within the Office of the Deputy Attorney General.

(b)

Duties of the special counsel

The Special Counsel appointed under subsection (a) shall have the following duties:

(1)

Coordinating the policies and strategies of the Department of Justice related to the prevention and investigation of child exploitation cases, including the policies and strategies of the Office of Justice Programs, the Criminal Division of the Department of Justice, the Executive Office of United States Attorneys, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and any other agency or bureau of the Department of Justice whose activities relate to child exploitation cases.

(2)

Pursuing memorandums of understanding or other interagency agreements related to the prevention, investigation, and apprehension of individuals exploiting children, including seeking cooperation and collaboration with—

(A)

the Bureau of Immigration and Customs Enforcement;

(B)

the Department of State;

(C)

the Department of Commerce;

(D)

the Department of Education; and

(E)

other Federal agencies.

(3)

Directing and overseeing the ICAC Task Force Program established under section 102.

(4)

Directing and overseeing the National Internet Crimes Against Children Data Network Center established under section 105.

(5)

Directing and overseeing the ICAC grant program established under section 106.

(6)

Coordinating technical assistance to Federal, State, local, and tribal law enforcement agencies in the prevention, investigation, and prosecution of child exploitation crimes.

(7)

Coordinating training to Federal, State, local, and tribal law enforcement agencies in the prevention, investigation, and prosecution of child exploitation crimes.

(8)

Coordinating training and technical assistance to Federal, State, local, and tribal on forensic computer examination and analysis.

(9)

Directing and overseeing programs for child exploitation prevention and education, including programs related to Internet safety.

(10)

Maintaining liaison with the judicial branches of the Federal and State Governments on matters relating to child exploitation.

(11)

Providing information to the President, the Congress, the judiciary, State, local, and tribal governments, and the general public on matters relating to child exploitation.

(12)

Serving, at the request of the Attorney General, as the representative of the Department of Justice on domestic task forces, committees, or commissions addressing policy or issues relating to child exploitation.

(13)

Serving, at the request of the President, acting through the Attorney General, as the representative of the United States Government on human rights and economic justice matters related to child exploitation in international fora, including the United Nations.

(14)

Providing technical assistance, coordination, and support to—

(A)

other components of the Department of Justice, in efforts to develop policy and to enforce Federal laws relating to child exploitation cases, including the litigation of civil and criminal actions relating to enforcing such laws;

(B)

other Federal, State, local, and tribal agencies, in efforts to develop policy, provide technical assistance, and improve coordination among agencies carrying out efforts to eliminate child exploitation; and

(C)

grantees, in efforts to combat child exploitation and to provide support and assistance to victims of such exploitation.

102.

Establishment of ICAC Task Force Program

(a)

Establishment

There is established within the Office of Justice Programs in the Department of Justice, under the general authority of the Attorney General, an Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force (hereinafter in this title referred to as the ICAC Task Force), which shall consist of a national program of State and local law enforcement task forces dedicated to developing effective responses to online enticement of children by sexual predators, child exploitation, and child obscenity and pornography cases.

(b)

National program

The national ICAC Task Force program required under subsection (a) shall consist of at least 1 ICAC task force in each State.

103.

Purpose of ICAC Task Forces

The ICAC Task Force, and each State or local ICAC task force that is part of the national program of task forces shall be dedicated towards—

(1)

increasing the investigative capabilities of State and local law enforcement officers in the detection, investigation, and apprehension of Internet crimes against children offenses or offenders, including technology-facilitated child exploitation offenses;

(2)

conducting proactive and reactive Internet crimes against children investigations;

(3)

providing training and technical assistance to ICAC Task Forces and other Federal, State, and local law enforcement agencies in the areas of investigations, forensics, prosecution, community outreach, and capacity-building, using recognized experts to assist in the development and delivery of training programs;

(4)

increasing the number of Internet crimes against children offenses being prosecuted in both Federal and State courts;

(5)

creating a multiagency task force response to Internet crimes against children offenses within each State;

(6)

enhancing nationwide responses to Internet crimes against children offenses, including assisting other ICAC task forces, as well as other Federal, State, and local agencies with Internet crimes against children investigations and prosecutions;

(7)

developing and delivering Internet crimes against children public awareness and prevention programs; and

(8)

participating in such other activities, both proactive and reactive, that will enhance investigations and prosecutions of Internet crimes against children.

104.

Duties and functions of Task Forces

Each State or local ICAC task force that is part of the national program of task forces shall—

(1)

consist of State and local investigators, prosecutors, forensic specialists, and education specialists who are dedicated full-time to address the goals of such task force;

(2)

work consistently towards achieving the purposes described in section 103;

(3)

engage in proactive investigations, forensic examinations, and effective prosecutions of Internet crimes against children;

(4)

provide forensic, preventive, and investigative assistance to parents, educators, prosecutors, law enforcement, and others concerned with Internet crimes against children;

(5)

develop multijurisdictional, multiagency responses and partnerships to Internet crimes against children offenses through ongoing informational, administrative, and technological support to other State and local law enforcement agencies, as a means for such agencies to acquire the necessary knowledge, personnel, and specialized equipment to investigate and prosecute such offenses;

(6)

fully participate in any nationally coordinated investigation, as requested by the Attorney General;

(7)

establish investigative and prosecution standards, consistent with established norms, to which that task force shall comply;

(8)

investigate, and seek prosecution on, tips related to Internet crimes against children, including tips from other law enforcement agencies, ICAC task forces, the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, and other Federal, State, and local agencies;

(9)

develop procedures for handling seized evidence;

(10)

maintain such reports and records as are required under this title; and

(11)

seek to comply with national standards regarding the investigation and prosecution of Internet crimes against children, as set forth by the Attorney General, to the extent such standards are consistent with the law of the State where the task force is located.

105.

National ICAC Data Network Center

(a)

In general

The Attorney General shall establish a National Internet Crimes Against Children Data Network Center.

(b)

Purpose of Center

The National Internet Crimes Against Children Data Network Center established under subsection (a) shall be dedicated to assisting—

(1)

the ICAC Task Force Program established under this title; and

(2)

Federal, State, local, and tribal agencies investigating and prosecuting child exploitation.

(c)

Mandatory requirements for Center

The National Internet Crimes Against Children Data Network Center established under subsection (a) shall develop and maintain an integrated technology and training program that provides—

(1)

a secure, online information-sharing and case management system for use by ICAC Task Forces, Federal law enforcement agencies, and other State and local law enforcement agencies;

(2)

a secure, online system for resolving case conflicts, for use by ICAC Task Forces, Federal law enforcement agencies, and other State and local law enforcement agencies;

(3)

a secure intelligence data storage and analysis system for use by ICAC Task Forces, Federal law enforcement agencies, and other State and local law enforcement agencies;

(4)

guidelines for the use of such Data Network by Federal, State, and local law enforcement agencies; and

(5)

training and technical assistance on the use of such Data Network by Federal, State, and local law enforcement agencies.

(d)

Authorization of appropriations

There are authorized to be appropriated for each of the fiscal years 2008 through 2015, $2,000,000 to carry out the provisions of this section, including for—

(1)

the establishment of the National Internet Crimes Against Children Data Network Center; and

(2)

the costs of operating and maintaining such Center.

106.

ICAC grant program

(a)

Establishment

(1)

In general

The Attorney General is authorized to award grants to State and local ICAC task forces to assist in carrying out the duties and functions described under section 104.

(2)

Formula

(A)

Attorney General to develop

At least 75 percent of the total funds appropriated for grants under paragraph (1) shall be awarded or otherwise distributed pursuant to a funding formula established by the Attorney General.

(B)

Baseline amount

Any formula established by the Attorney General under subparagraph (A), shall—

(i)

ensure that each State or local ICAC task force shall, at a minimum, receive an amount equal to 1 percent of the total funds appropriated for grants under paragraph (1); and

(ii)

take into consideration the following factors:

(I)

The population of each State, as determined by the most recent decennial census performed by the Bureau of the Census.

(II)

The number of investigative leads generated by the integrated technology system of each ICAC Task Force.

(III)

The number of Internet crimes against children criminal cases referred by a task force for Federal, State, or local prosecution.

(IV)

The number of successful prosecutions of child exploitation cases by a task force.

(V)

Such other criteria as the Attorney General determines demonstrates the level of need for additional resources by a task force.

(C)

Remaining funds

(i)

In general

The funds remaining for grants under this section after allocation of the baseline amounts under subparagraph (B) shall be distributed to State and local ICAC task forces based upon need, as set forth by criteria established by the Attorney General. Such criteria shall include:

(I)

The population of each State, as determined by the most recent decennial census performed by the Bureau of the Census.

(II)

The number of investigative leads generated by the integrated technology system of each ICAC Task Force.

(III)

The number of Internet crimes against children criminal cases referred by a task force for Federal, State, or local prosecution.

(IV)

The number of successful prosecutions of child exploitation cases by a task force.

(V)

Such other criteria as the Attorney General determines demonstrates the level of need for additional resources by a task force.

(ii)

Matching requirement

To be eligible to receive any remaining grant funds under this subparagraph, a State or local ICAC task force shall contribute matching non-Federal funds in an amount equal to not less than 25 percent of the total amount of the grant.

(b)

Application

(1)

In general

Each State or local ICAC task force seeking a grant under this section shall submit an application to the Attorney General at such time, in such manner, and accompanied by such information as the Attorney General may reasonably require.

(2)

Contents

Each application submitted pursuant to paragraph (1) shall—

(A)

describe the activities for which assistance under this section is sought; and

(B)

provide such additional assurances as the Attorney General determines to be essential to ensure compliance with the requirements of this title.

(c)

Allowable uses

Grants awarded under this section may be used to—

(1)

hire personnel, investigators, prosecutors, education specialists, and forensic specialists;

(2)

establish and support forensic laboratories utilized in Internet crimes against children investigations;

(3)

support investigations and prosecutions of Internet crimes against children;

(4)

conduct and assist with education programs to help children and parents protect themselves from Internet predators;

(5)

conduct and attend training sessions related to successful investigations and prosecutions of Internet crimes against children; and

(6)

fund any other activities directly related to preventing, investigating, or prosecuting Internet crimes against children.

(d)

Reporting requirements

(1)

ICAC reports

To measure the results of the activities funded by grants under this section, and to assist the Attorney General in complying with the Government Performance and Results Act (Public Law 103–62; 107 Stat. 285), each State or local ICAC task force receiving a grant under this section shall, on an annual basis, submit a report to the Attorney General that sets forth the following:

(A)

Staffing levels of the task force, including the number of investigators, prosecutors, education specialists, and forensic specialists dedicated to investigating and prosecuting Internet crimes against children.

(B)

Investigation and prosecution performance measures of the task force, including—

(i)

the number of Internet crimes against children related arrests;

(ii)

the number of prosecutions for Internet crimes against children, including—

(I)

whether the prosecution resulted in a conviction for such crime; and

(II)

the sentence and the statutory maximum for such crime under State law.

(C)

The number of referrals made by the task force to the United States Attorneys office, including whether the referral was accepted by the United States Attorney.

(D)

The number of investigative technical assistance sessions that the task force provided to non-member law enforcement agencies.

(E)

The number of computer forensic examinations that the task force completed.

(F)

The number of law enforcement agencies participating in Internet crimes against children program standards established by the task force.

(2)

Report to Congress

Not later than 1 year after the date of enactment of this Act, the Attorney General shall submit a report to Congress on—

(A)

the progress of the development of the ICAC Task Forces established under this title; and

(B)

the number of Federal and State investigations, prosecutions, and convictions in the prior 12-month period related to child exploitation.

107.

Authorization of appropriations

(a)

In general

There are authorized to be appropriated to carry out this title—

(1)

$60,000,000 for fiscal year 2008;

(2)

$75,000,000 for fiscal year 2009;

(3)

$75,000,000 for fiscal year 2010;

(4)

$75,000,000 for fiscal year 2011;

(5)

$75,000,000 for fiscal year 2012;

(6)

$75,000,000 for fiscal year 2013;

(7)

$100,000,000 for fiscal year 2014; and

(8)

$100,000,000 for fiscal year 2015.

(b)

Availability

Funds appropriated under subsection (a) shall remain available until expended.

II

Additional measures to combat child exploitation

201.

Additional regional computer forensic labs

(a)

Additional resources

The Attorney shall establish additional computer forensic capacity to address the current backlog for computer forensics, including for child exploitation investigations. The Attorney General may utilize funds under this title to establish new regional computer forensic laboratories within the Regional Computer Forensic Laboratories Program operated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation or may increase capacity at existing laboratories.

(b)

New computer forensic labs

If the Attorney General determines that new regional computer forensic laboratories are needed under subsection (a) to address existing backlogs, such new laboratories shall be established pursuant to subsection (d).

(c)

Purpose of new resources

The additional forensic capacity established by the resources provided under this section shall prioritize its activities to assist Federal agencies, State and local Internet Crimes Against Children task forces, and other Federal, State, and local law enforcement agencies in preventing, investigating, and prosecuting Internet crimes against children.

(d)

Purpose of new additional capacity

The location of any new regional computer forensic laboratories under this section shall be determined by the Attorney General, in consultation with the Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Regional Computer Forensic Laboratory National Steering Committee, and other relevant stakeholders.

(e)

Report

Not later than 1 year after the date of enactment of this Act, and every year thereafter, the Attorney General shall submit a report to the Congress on how the funds appropriated under this section were utilized.

(f)

Authorization of appropriations

There are authorized to be appropriated for fiscal years 2008 through 2015, $7,00,000 to carry out the provisions of this section.

202.

Enhanced authority to investigate Internet crimes against children

Section 2516(2) of title 18, United States Code, is amended by inserting or crimes against children, including child exploitation, child obscenity, or other crimes dangerous to the life, limb, and well-being of minor children, after other dangerous drugs,.

203.

Additional field agents for the FBI

(a)

In general

There are authorized to be appropriated to the Attorney General $20,000,000, for each of the fiscal years 2008 through 2009, and $25,000,000 for each of fiscal years 2010 through 2015, to fund the hiring of full-time Federal Bureau of Investigation field agents and associated analysts and support staff in addition to the number of such employees serving in those capacities on the date of enactment of this Act.

(b)

Sole purpose

The sole purpose of the additional staff required to be hired under subsection (a) is to work on child exploitation cases as part of the Federal Bureau of Investigation's Innocent Images National Initiative.

204.

Immigrations and customs enforcement enhancement

(a)

Additional agents

There are authorized to be appropriated to the Secretary of Homeland Security $15,000,000, for each of the fiscal years 2008 through 2015, to fund the hiring of full-time agents and associated analysts and support staff within the Bureau of Immigration and Customs Enforcement in addition to the number of such employees serving in those capacities on the date of enactment of this Act.

(b)

Sole purpose

The sole purpose of the additional staff required to be hired under subsection (a) is to work on child exploitation and child obscenity cases.

205.

Combating trafficking via the United States Postal Service

(a)

In general

There are authorized to be appropriated to the Postmaster General $5,000,000, for each of the fiscal years 2008 through 2015, to fund the hiring of full-time agents and associated analysts and support staff in addition to the number of such employees serving in those capacities on the date of enactment of this Act.

(b)

Sole purpose

The sole purpose of the additional staff required to be hired under subsection (a) is to work on child exploitation and child obscenity cases.

206.

Accountability provisions for child exploitation prevention and interdiction

The Attorney General, in consultation with the Secretary of Homeland Security and the Postmaster General, shall report to the Committees on the Judiciary of the Senate and House of Representatives and any other relevant committee of jurisdiction, on an annual basis, on the resources (agents, forensic labs, prosecutors, etc.) being utilized by such agencies to investigate and prosecute child exploitation and child obscenity cases, including the resources established under this title, the Adam Walsh Child Protection and Safety Act of 2006 (Public Law 109–248; 120 Stat. 587), and any other law related to combating child exploitation and child obscenity.

207.

Truth in sentencing report

Not later than 1 year after the date of enactment of this Act, the Comptroller General of the United States shall conduct a study and report to Congress on the efforts to combat child exploitation at the Federal, State, and local level, including an examination of the average sentences for child sex offenders and the length of time served for each individual child sex offender.