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Rubio, Colleagues Introduce Bill to Close Child Exploitation Loophole

Jan 19, 2024 | Comunicados de Prensa

Under federal law, repeat child exploitation offenders routinely receive enhanced penalties for their crimes. However, current law contains a loophole allowing these offenders sentenced under the Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ) to receive lighter sentences, despite being engaged in the same conduct. 

U.S. Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) and colleagues introduced the Parity for Recidivist Child Exploitation Offenders Act to ensure the UCMJ is on par with state and federal law.

  • “Those convicted of multiple child pornography and related offenses should face increased sentences. Ensuring that this loophole is closed is long overdue, and it is with great pride that I introduce this legislation with bipartisan and bicameral support. We must continue to work hard against the great evil of sexual abuse, especially relating to minors.” – senador Rubio

Joining Senator Rubio were Senators Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), and Marsha Blackburn (R-TN).

  • “Ensuring that all repeat sex offenders, including those with prior military convictions, are equally held responsible for their crimes and sentenced accordingly is of the utmost importance. The Parity for Recidivist Child Exploitation Offenders Act is a critical piece of legislation that will guarantee parity among state, federal, and UCMJ child exploitation convictions and send a clear message that such actions will not be tolerated. I am determined to ensure that every child sex offender is held to the same standard of accountability. This legislation is a powerful step in protecting our children and ensuring justice for survivors.” –  Senator Gillibrand

U.S. Representatives Claudia Tenney (R-NY) and Deborah Ross (D-NC) introduced companion legislation in the House. 

  • “Sexual predators who repeatedly abuse and exploit children must face heightened penalties for their heinous and unspeakable crimes. Currently, loopholes in our justice system fail to apply these enhanced penalties to all sexual crimes involving children. The Parity for Child Exploitation Offenders Act closes these loopholes to ensure repeat offenders of these horrific crimes face the same mandatory federal penalties. Thank you to Representative Ross and Senators Rubio and Klobuchar for joining me in these efforts to protect our children.” – Congresswoman Tenney

  • “We owe it to survivors of child sexual abuse or exploitation who have endured unspeakable trauma to ensure their assailants face the full consequences of their actions. This important legislation will address lingering loopholes in our criminal justice system that allow sexual predators who have been convicted by the Uniform Code of Military Justice to avoid mandatory federal sentencing. I am grateful for the leadership of Representative Tenney and Senators Rubio and Klobuchar and will continue working diligently with my colleagues to see this bill signed into law.”  – Congresswoman Ross