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Analysis of Federally Prosecuted CSEC Cases Since the Passage of the Victims of Trafficking and Violence Protection Act of 2000, Final Report

NCJ Number
Date Published
January 2008
164 pages
This report on a national analysis of Federal prosecutions of cases that involved the commercial sexual exploitation of children and youth (CSEC) focused on whether relevant laws are being enforced, key features of successful CSEC prosecutions, whether courts have increased penalties for CSEC crimes, and the effects of CSEC legislation on service providers who work with victims.
The study found that Federal laws intended to counter CSEC crimes are being enforced. These laws include the Victims of Trafficking and Violence Protection Act (TVPA) enacted in 2000 and the 2003 Prosecutorial Remedies and Other Tools To End the Exploitation of Children Today (PROTECT). Factors important in gaining convictions in a CSEC case were filing after TVPA passage; investigation by U.S. Customs as opposed to the FBI; longer case processing time; having only one defendant; the involvement of child pornography in the charge; and being filed in the Second, Third, Fourth, Fifth, Sixth, or Seventh Circuit Courts. In addition, the study found that prosecutors are obtaining more severe sentences under the CSEC-related Federal laws passed since 2000. Regarding services for victims in CSEC cases, Federal legislation has tended to focus on services for victims who are non-U.S. citizens, under the assumption that CSEC victims who are U.S. citizens have access to needed specialized services by virtue of their citizenship status. This has led to service gaps for victims who are U.S. citizens. Implications of these findings are drawn for policy, practice, and research. The research involved a literature review, informational interviews with four Federal prosecutors, and statistical analyses of Federal CSEC cases filed by U.S. attorneys from 1998 through 2005. 3 exhibits, 25 figures, 9 tables, 47 references, and 9 appendixes with supplementary information

Date Published: January 1, 2008