Nevada's Law on Trafficking in Children (NRS 200.4685)
(Explained by Las Vegas Criminal Defense Lawyers) 

woman leaving baby with another woman

What is Nevada's law on "child trafficking"?

Nevada law makes “trafficking in children” a category C felony in Nevada punishable by:

  • 1 - 5 years in Nevada State Prison, and
  • A fine of up to $10,000.

You traffic in children when:

  • You sell, transfer, or arrange for the sale or transfer of a child to another person for money or anything of value, or 
  • You receive a child in exchange for money or anything of value, or
  • You place (or do anything that helps to place) a child in the physical custody of someone who is not a relative of the child for the purpose of permanently avoiding or divesting yourself of responsibility for the child.

For purposes of NRS 200.4685, a child is defined as anyone under the age of 18.

Exceptions to Nevada's child trafficking statute

You are not guilty of trafficking a child under NRS 200.4685 if you:

  • Place a child with a relative, step-parent, child-placing agency, or an agency which provides child welfare services; or
  • You are the parent or legal custodian of the child, and you temporarily place the child with another person with the intent to return for the child.

Reasons you might legally place a child in temporary custody include:

  • You are on vacation,
  • You are at work,
  • You are incarcerated, 
  • You are serving in the military, 
  • You are receiving medical treatment, or 
  • You are incapacitated.

You also do not violate the law when you do any of the following in accordance with applicable law:

  • Place a child in foster care,
  • Put a child up for adoption, 
  • Put a child under short-term guardianship (including by members of the military),
  • Place a child as approved by a court of competent jurisdiction; or
  • Deliver a child to a provider of emergency services.

Restitution for child trafficking victims

In addition to a prison sentence and criminal fine, a person convicted of child trafficking may be ordered to pay restitution to his or her victim.1]

Such restitution may include, without limitation:

  • The cost of medical and psychological treatment, including, without limitation, physical and occupational therapy and rehabilitation;
  • The cost of transportation, temporary housing, and child care;
  • The return of property, the cost of repairing damaged property, or the full value of the property if it is destroyed or damaged beyond repair;
  • Expenses incurred by a victim in relocating away from the defendant or his or her associates, if the expenses are verified by law enforcement to be necessary for the personal safety of the victim;
  • The cost of repatriation of the victim to his or her home country, if applicable; and
  • Any and all other losses suffered by the victim as a result of the child trafficking.

How does trafficking in children differ from human trafficking?

If you traffic a child for purposes of child prostitution or as an indentured servant or to bring an illegal child into the United States, you are guilty of human trafficking rather than trafficking in children.

Human trafficking -- whether for financial gain (NRS 200.467) or for an illegal purpose such as involuntary servitude (NRS 200.468) -- is a Category B felony. Depending on the specific code section, it can be punished by as much as 20 years in Nevada prison and a fine of up to $50,000.

See our article on Nevada human trafficking laws (NRS 200.467 & NRS 200.468).

Accused of child trafficking in Nevada? Call us for help…

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If you or someone you know has been charged with the Nevada crime of child trafficking, we invite you to call us for a free consultation.

Our compassionate Las Vegas criminal defense lawyers understand that there are many reasons why you might be placing a child in someone else's custody. We know that you are innocent until proven guilty and entitled to the best defense to Nevada child trafficking charges.

For a free consultation to discuss your case and your options, call us at 702-DEFENSE (702-333-3673) or complete the form on this page.

One of our knowledgeable Reno or Las Vegas criminal lawyers will get back to you promptly to talk to you about how you can fight the charges.

Legal references:

  1. NRS 200.469.


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