Proposal closes legal loophole for sex offenders

Florida State Capitol Building

A proposal that would close a legal loophole in which some convicted sex offenders don’t have to immediately register with authorities was one of four bills sent Tuesday morning to Gov. Ron DeSantis. 

The sex-offender bill (SB 234), sponsored by Senate Minority Leader Lauren Book, D-Plantation, was crafted after courts ruled a Tampa man, who was sentenced to 15 years in prison and ordered to pay a $10,000 fine for molesting two girls, didn’t have to register as a sex offender after being released from prison until he paid the fine. 

"Despite a history of preying on young kids, this man was able to live freely and interact with unsuspecting children in person and online," Book said in a news release after lawmakers approved the bill April 27. 

DeSantis will have 15 days to act on the measure.

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