CBS46 tours seamy underbelly of metro Atlanta's sex industry - CBS46 News

CBS46 tours seamy underbelly of metro Atlanta's sex industry

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ATLANTA (CBS46) -

They're not even old enough to go to their high school proms, girls and boys forced into lives of sexual slavery.

"Girls were 13 years old, 14 years old,” said an exotic dancer turned activist Kasey McClure. “Child sex trafficking is bad in metro Atlanta due to the internet, due to hotels, due to men out there looking for young women to prey on."

Each month around metro Atlanta hundreds of children are bought and sold for sex.

"Runaways, girls who run away from foster homes, they're at risk for getting trapped in this lifestyle," McClure said.

McClure and State Sen. Renee Unterman (R), of Buford, took CBS46 on a tour of the seamy underbelly of metro Atlanta's sex industry, an industry that's destroying the lives of the children it ensnares.

"It is a form of sexual slavery and we have to stop it," McClure said.

CBS46 drove by streets and hotels where children are forced to hook up with strangers, risking physical harm and even death.

"It's heart-wrenching," McClure said.

McClure, who runs an advocacy and help group called 4Sarah, reaches out to women and girls to tell them there is a better way.

“We tell them we're not judging you. We just love them where they're at,” McClure said.

The pimps and the people who make money off the children often go unpunished.

The penalties are “not tough enough," McClure said.

Unterman is sponsoring a proposal to toughen the penalties against sex traffickers. The bill would force convicted sex traffickers to register as sex offenders and give victims more time to press charges against their abusers.

"I think men should be locked up if they're having sex with a minor. They should be put away for life because they're taking that child's life," McClure said.

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