House, Senate leaders highlight human trafficking legislation

state-capitol2House and Senate leaders held a press conference Wednesday to highlight legislation to combat human trafficking in Virginia. House Bill 1964 (Hugo) and Senate Bill 1188 (Obenshain) would  for the first time in Virginia create a standalone statute for sex trafficking. Delegates Rob Bell (R-Albemarle), Todd Gilbert (R-Shenandoah) and David Yancey (R-Newport News) also attended the press conference.

HB1964, introduced by Delegate Hugo, will define and establish the offense of sex trafficking as a class 2 felony, which includes sex trafficking of a minor. It establishes mandatory minimum sentencing for a perpetrator when a minor becomes the victim of sex trafficking, and would criminalize the recruitment of minors and adults for commercial sex.

Commenting on the legislation, Delegate Hugo said, “We must continue to send traffickers, buyers, and facilitators the message that they are not welcome in our state. I look forward to working with my colleagues in the General Assembly, the Courts of Justice Committees, and Delegates Rob Bell and Todd Gilbert, who have been leaders on this issue, to continue the fight against this abhorrent crime. Those who would seek to harm our children will know that our kids are not for sale in Virginia. Not now, and not ever.”

This will be the fourth piece of legislation in four years introduced by Delegate Hugo aimed at human trafficking. HB1898, introduced by Delegate Hugo in 2011, passed into law, making abduction for the purposes of child prostitution a felony. HB1606, which became law in 2013, increased the punishment for those soliciting minors for prostitution. Most recently in 2014, he passed HB485, which empowers law enforcement to better track down and arrest suspected traffickers.



augusta free press
augusta free press news

UVA Basketball Fans!

uva basketball team of destiny
Team of Destiny: Inside Virginia Basketball’s Run to the 2019 National Championship, by Jerry Ratcliffe and Chris Graham, is available for $25. The book, with additional reporting by Zach Pereles, Scott Ratcliffe, and Scott German, will take you from the aftermath of the stunning first-round loss to UMBC in 2018 through to the thrilling overtime win over Texas Tech to win the 2019 national title, the first in school history.

Dick Vitale on Team of Destiny: “This is a hoops story you will LOVE! Jerry and Chris capture the sensational and dramatic championship journey by Tony Bennett and his tenacious Cavalier team. UVA was Awesome Baby and so is this book!”

Ralph Sampson on Team of Destiny: “Jerry and Chris have lived and seen it all, even before my time. I highly recommend this book to every basketball fan across the globe. This story translates to all who know defeat and how to overcome it!”

Buy here.

AFP Business

As professional consultants, Augusta Free Press LLC provides clients in the Shenandoah Valley and Central Virginia and beyond with marketing and PR solutions including website design, SEO, TV/radio, video work, branding and logos, social media and overall marketing campaign design and implementation. Augusta Free Press LLC was founded in 2002.

Web Design

Augusta Free Press has designed more than 800 websites for clients in the Shenandoah Valley and Central Virginia. We take care of all facets of web design – visual design, layout design, content development and SEO. Short on staff? We’ll work with you to update your AFP-designed website in a timely manner or train your staff to make changes.

Marketing/Social Media Management

Augusta Free Press manages advertising campaigns for small- and medium-sized businesses across Virginia. You don’t need to hire a full-time marketing coordinator. Bring the experience of the Augusta Free Press team to work for you – for a fraction of the cost.

Graphic Design

Augusta Free Press will help you take your vision to the next level. From branding and logos to print materials, our team will work with you to develop products to showcase your business. From brochures and rack cards to full-color magazines or print/digital ads, we’ve got you covered.

Event Planning/Fundraising

Augusta Free Press will help you plan the best event for your organization. From an open house or anniversary to a 5K or Pay Per View, we can handle it all. Looking for training for your sales staff? We can help energize your employees or board. Need ideas to raise more money? Let us help you plan a successful event. Want to hold a news conference or need help with a press release? We can do that too.

Click here for more.