CHICAGO (AP) — Activists are pushing for tougher laws on child sexual abuse in the wake of former U.S. House Speaker Dennis Hastert’s hush-money case that revealed he abused several high school students decades ago.
Organizers gathered in Chicago Sunday to call for the tightening of state and federal laws. The main organizer was the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, or SNAP. Hastert couldn’t be charged criminally with sex abuse because statutes of limitations in Illinois ran out.
The Illinois Republican was prosecuted instead on federal banking violations as he sought to pay one victim $3.5 million in hush money. Among other changes, SNAP wants Illinois to make it easier for victims to sue their abusers. Hastert entered a prison in Minnesota last week to begin serving a 15-month sentence.