Jun 7, 2016 7:32 AM

Hassan to sign bill addressing minors, sex trafficking

CONCORD (AP) — Gov. Maggie Hassan is going to sign into a law a bill that makes it a felony for someone to pay or offer to pay for sex with a minor.

Advocates for the bill say it strengthens the state's existing human trafficking laws by ensuring that people engaged in buying sex from traffickers are subject to strict penalties. It is part of a national initiative to combat sex trafficking by a nonprofit called Shared Hope International.

The New Hampshire Coalition Against Domestic and Sexual Violence backed the bill, saying it's important to hold customers as well as traffickers accountable for exploiting minors.

The Legislature passed a bill in 2014 enhancing penalties for people who engage in human sex trafficking.

Hassan is scheduled to sign the bill Tuesday. It's scheduled to go into effect Jan. 1, 2017.

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