By: Hinojosa  S.B. No. 576
         (In the Senate - Filed February 3, 2021; March 11, 2021,
  read first time and referred to Committee on Criminal Justice;
  April 15, 2021, reported favorably by the following vote:  Yeas 5,
  Nays 0; April 15, 2021, sent to printer.)
Click here to see the committee vote
  relating to the prosecution and punishment of the offense of
  smuggling of persons.
         SECTION 1.  Section 20.01, Penal Code, is amended by adding
  Subdivisions (6), (7), and (8) to read as follows:
               (6)  "Agricultural land" has the meaning assigned by
  Section 75.001, Civil Practice and Remedies Code.
               (7)  "Firearm" has the meaning assigned by Section
               (8)  "Special investigator" includes an agent of the
  United States Department of Homeland Security.
         SECTION 2.  Sections 20.05(a) and (b), Penal Code, are
  amended to read as follows:
         (a)  A person commits an offense if the person[, with the
  intent to obtain a pecuniary benefit,] knowingly:
               (1)  uses a motor vehicle, aircraft, watercraft, or
  other means of conveyance to transport an individual with the
  intent to:
                     (A)  conceal the individual from a peace officer
  or special investigator; or
                     (B)  flee from a person the actor knows is a peace
  officer or special investigator attempting to lawfully arrest or
  detain the actor; [or]
               (2)  encourages or induces a person to enter or remain
  in this country in violation of federal law by concealing,
  harboring, or shielding that person from detection; or
               (3)  assists, guides, or directs two or more
  individuals to enter or remain on agricultural land without the
  effective consent of the owner.
         (b)  An offense under this section is a felony of the third
  degree, except that the offense is:
               (1)  a felony of the second degree if:
                     (A)  the actor commits the offense  in a manner
  that creates a substantial likelihood that the smuggled individual
  will suffer serious bodily injury or death; [or]
                     (B)  the smuggled individual is a child younger
  than 18 years of age at the time of the offense;
                     (C)  the offense was committed with the intent to
  obtain a pecuniary benefit;
                     (D)  during the commission of the offense the
  actor, another party to the offense, or an individual assisted,
  guided, or directed by the actor knowingly possessed a firearm; or
                     (E)  the actor commits the offense under
  Subsection (a)(1)(B); or
               (2)  a felony of the first degree if:
                     (A)  it is shown on the trial of the offense that,
  as a direct result of the commission of the offense, the smuggled
  individual became a victim of sexual assault, as defined by Section
  22.011, or aggravated sexual assault, as defined by Section 22.021;
                     (B)  the smuggled individual suffered serious
  bodily injury or death.
         SECTION 3.  The change in law made by this Act applies only
  to an offense committed on or after the effective date of this Act.
  An offense committed before the effective date of this Act is
  governed by the law in effect on the date the offense was committed,
  and the former law is continued in effect for that purpose. For
  purposes of this section, an offense was committed before the
  effective date of this Act if any element of the offense occurred
  before that date.
         SECTION 4.  This Act takes effect September 1, 2021.
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