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New Law Requires Registered Sex Offenders to List Convictions on their Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn Profiles.

On June 21, 2012, Louisiana lawmakers passed a bill that requires all registered sex offenders to list their criminal status, the jurisdiction in which they were convicted and a description of their physical characteristics on all of their social networking accounts. The intention of the law is to provide notice to persons the offender may interact with online, in the same way that state registration requirements are used to notify officials and communities of the whereabouts of convicted sex offenders.

According to the bill’s author, Louisiana State Representative Jeff Thompson, this bill is first of its kind in the U.S. and compliments a law signed by Louisiana Governor, Bobby Jindal, in May, which prohibits certain registered sex offenders from using social networks at all. While certain social networking sites, including Facebook have prohibited convicted sex offenders from signing up for a number of years now, this new law is meant to catch those people that the social networks miss. The law also adds hefty punishments for violators, who could face up to 20 years in prison with hard labor, without parole for contravening the new law. 

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