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House passes bill to create crime of labor trafficking resulting in death

Minnesota is on the cusp of creating a new crime.

The House passed HF42, which would criminalize labor trafficking that results in death and make it punishable by up to 25 years in prison, 127-0 Thursday. It now goes to the Senate.

The bill would also create enhanced penalties for labor trafficking a person over an extended period of time or when a labor trafficking victim suffers great bodily harm as a result of the trafficking.

“The goal of these changes is to address some glaring holes in our existing statutes that enable perpetrators to evade the law,” said Rep. Sandra Feist (DFL-New Brighton), the bill sponsor.

An amendment unsuccessfully offered by Rep. Marion O'Neill (R-Maple Lake) would have required minimum mandatory sentencing for sex trafficking offenses. It was ruled out of order.

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