PRESIDENT TO AID WAR ON
Mann and Sims Enlist Taft in Movement to Stop White Slavery Trade.
ASK POWER OF CONGRESS.
Passage of Bill Will Prevent Interstate Traffic is First Step.
Washington, D. C., Nov. 24 — [Special] — The aid of President Taft in a movement towards stamping out the white slave traffic was obtained today by two Chicagoans — Congressman James R. Mann and United States Attorney Edwin Sims.
They laid before the executive the draft of a proposed law by which it is sought to exterminate the traffic in women between states and between this and foreign countries through the power of congress to regulate interstate and foreign commerce. The bill was drawn by Sims, and will be introduced at a forthcoming session of congress by Mann, chairman of the house committee on interstate and foreign commerce.
After listening to the statements of the two Chicagoans, setting forth the prevalence of the evil and the difficulty of its eradication the president gave assurance that he would do all in his power to aid in the reform. It is the hope of the leaders of the movement that Mr. Taft will include recommendations on this subject in his next message to congress.
Provisions of Proposed Law.
The principle provisions of the proposed law are:
Any person involved in the transportation of a woman or girl between the states or territories, or between this and any foreign country, for immoral purposes shall be deemed guilty of a felony and punished by a fine of not more than $5,000, or not more than five years, or both.
Any person involved in coercing or enticing girls from one state to another, or from foreign countries, shall be deemed a felon and punished in the same manner.
Any person who contributes to the enticing or transporting of girls under 19 years of age shall be fined not more than $10,000, or imprisoned for not more than ten years, or both.
In order to carry out the terms of the treaties with foreign countries for the suppression of the white slave traffic the commission general of immigration is required to obtain declarations from the women imported for immoral purposes, setting forth the manner in which they were enticed to this country.
Any keeper of a resort shall be required to report to the commissioner general of immigration the name of any inmate harbored within three years of her arrival in this country.
Any person who shall fail to file such information within thirty days, or who shall make false statements in such reports, shall be deemed guilty of a misdemeanor and punished by a fine of not more than $2,000, or by imprisonment for not more than two years, or both.
Will Give Nation Power
It is believed the government can break up the traffic through the control of interstate commerce in the same way the big lotteries were put out of business. The bill is intended to give the government the power of interference, which, under the previous laws, the Supreme court declared it lacked.
The prosecutions of panders conducted by United States Attorney Sims in Chicago resulted in giving a severe setback to the traffic, if not entirely breaking it up.
"This legislation is needed," said Congressman Mann, "to put a stop to a villainous interstate and international traffic in women and girls. Investigation has shown that there is in existence an organization system or syndicate having for its purpose the importation of women from foreign countries to Chicago and other cities of the United States for immoral purposes.
"It has been estimated that the syndicate imported annually during the last eight or ten years on average of about 2,000 women, largely French. The syndicate regularly sent agents to Europe to obtain girls at stated prices to be brought to the United States, where they were placed at the disposal of proprietors of resorts.
"The book of accounts kept by Alphone Dufour, the notorious Chicago importer of girls, showed that his profits for the twelve months immediately preceding this arrest were upwards of $102,000."