Ark. lawmakers approve anti-human trafficking bill

Ark. lawmakers approve anti-human trafficking bill

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) - Proposals to toughen Arkansas' laws protecting human trafficking victims are heading to Gov. Mike Beebe's desk after lawmakers gave them final approval.

The House and the Senate on Thursday approved identical measures offering new protections to victims that include allowing them to sue their abductors and creating new penalties for anyone who knowingly patronizes a prostitute who is a human trafficking victim.

Beebe's office has said the governor plans to sign the measures into law.

A national group last year called Arkansas 1 of the "faltering four" states in terms of legislation to protect victims of human trafficking.

The Senate unanimously approved the bill on a 35-0 vote. The House approved the measure on a 93-0 vote.

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