Bipartisan legislation sponsored by Senator Steven Oroho that would establish the crime of sexual extortion to fight a growing trend that often victimizes minors was signed into law.
Sen. Oroho’s bill that would establish the crime of sexual extortion to fight a growing trend that often victimizes minors was signed into law. (Pixabay)
“I am pleased that this legislation was signed into law today to protect minors from sexual victimization in New Jersey. We will now be able to identify, convict, and punish the perpetrators who engage in this despicable behavior,” said Oroho (R-24). “This law upholds our commitment as legislators to ensure that justice will be served for the victims of this heinous abuse.”
Sexual extortion occurs when a victim is threatened or coerced into engaging in a sexual activity or providing explicit material to the offender. According to the FBI, sextortion can begin on any online site, app, or game. In some cases, the interaction begins with a threat to reveal an image or video unless the victim provides more material.
Senator Oroho’s bill, S-653, criminalizes sexual extortion to the third degree with a penalty of up to five years imprisonment and a $15,000 penalty.
If a victim is under the age of 18, or is an adult with a developmental disability, the charges are increased to aggravated sexual extortion in the second degree. This crime generally carries a penalty of up to ten years in prison and a $150,000 fine.
“Young victims are often reluctant to report their abusers due to fear of embarrassment or retaliation,” added Oroho. “This law will make the perpetrators of these horrendous acts pay a steep price for the emotional and psychological damage they cause to innocent minors.”
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