California’s Red Light Abatement Act shuts down motels that were assisting pimps

A judge ordered two Oakland, California motels to close for a year and to pay hefty fines after being sued by the city for decades of assaults by pimps and johns against women and girls involving fists, lighters and whips, five reported rapes, pimping and pandering and human trafficking. The judge’s decision is a powerful win in the struggle to abolish prostitution and trafficking.

The California Red Light Abatement Act requires that property owners prevent prostitution and trafficking on their premises. The law, enacted in1988 is a strategy to hold property owners accountable when their tenants traffick or prostitute women.

Prosecutors and community members in Nassau County, New York targeted building owners where massage parlor owners functioned as pimps using a similar law. The campaign shut down all illegal county massage parlors.

PRE congratulates Oakland on this use of the Red Light Abatement Act. Both pimps and landlords should be held accountable for facilitating trafficking of women and children.

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