With California ranked as one of the states with the worst problems of human trafficking, Gov. Jerry Brown on Sunday signed a raft of seven bills aimed at improving prosecution of the crime, whose victims are often forced into prostitution, domestic servitude and sweatshop labor.
A 2012 report by the U.S. State Department lists California, New York and Texas as the states with the most human trafficking activity, and says Los Angeles, San Francisco and San Diego are among the top 10 areas in the United States for the activity.
The governor approved a bill by Sen. Holly Mitchell (D-Los Angeles) that allows courts to authorize wiretaps for the investigation or prosecution of human trafficking.
"Human trafficking is a form of modern-day slavery," Mitchell said in a statement in support of SB 955. "The victims are frequently children of color and young women who have been forced into prostitution. They need our help."
Brown also signed a Mitchell bill that allows sex trafficking prevention education in California's public schools. That bill is SB 1165.