Nearly 100,000 Americans annually are arrested for soliciting sex. Unfortunately, what constitutes prostitution, solicitation, and promoting prostitution (pimping) vary between states and can be somewhat subjective. Many are arrested and charged with prostitution-related crimes as a result of entrapment, that is, when a police officer lures a person into offering to pay for sex or offer sex for payment. Online prostitution sites are also increasing the number of arrests for sex work and solicitation of sex work. If you are facing charges for prostitution, solicitation, or pimping, be sure to find a sex crime defense attorney.
Prostitution may be the world’s oldest profession, but in most of the United States, it is still considered a Class A misdemeanor–the most serious classification of misdemeanor. In Oregon, this is punishable by up to a year in prison and over $6,000 in fines. Unfortunately, prostitution can encompass sex acts other than intercourse, and accepting “other consideration” (such as a service or favor) instead of money may also be considered illegal prostitution. If charged, you will receive a court-appointed attorney, but you also have the right to seek out prostitution attorneys who have experience with this area of sex crime.
Like prostitution, solicitation of a prostitute is also a Class A misdemeanor. Charges may be more serious if you attempt to solicit sex with a minor. Even if you don’t explicitly reach an agreement, taking some action to indicate willingness may be enough to lead to a conviction. For example, inviting the prostitute into your vehicle or going to a hotel with a sex worker can indicate intent.
Promoting Prostitution Charges
Promoting prostitution by owning, maintaining, and/or profiting from sex work is a Class C felony in the State of Oregon. This can also include driving someone to a known house of prostitution or knowingly allowing your property (such as a home or vehicle) to be used for sex work. You’ll want to consult with a sex crime defense attorney, but Class C felonies can require upwards of ten years in prison and/or fines of $10,000 or more. Again, promoting the prostitution of a minor will carry an even heavier sentence.
Some attorneys may only act as prostitution lawyers, while others cover various sex crimes, such as solicitation and pimping. Take care to find a quality attorney to represent you as soon as you are taken into custody and charges are brought.