Definition of Prostitution
In California prostitution is defined as offering to, agreeing to, any lewd and or sexual act between persons for money or other consideration.
Other considerations can include goods or services such as drugs.1
How Does the Prosecutor Prove a Prostitution Charge?
A person can be charged with prostitution under Section 647(b) for:
- Soliciting prostitution, or
- Agreeing to engage in prostitution, or
- Engaging in prostitution.
How Does The Prosecutor Prove Solicitation?
- Defendant requested from another to engage in an act of prostitution2.
- Defendant intended to engage in an act of prostitution with another person3.
- The other person received the communication containing the request4.
What Does The Prosecutor Need To Prove An Agreement To Enagage In Prostitutiton?
The prosecutor need to show evidence of the following:
- Defendant agreed to engage in prostitution with another person5
- Defendant intended to engage in prostitution with another person6
- Defendant did something to further the commission of an act of prostitution7 including a verbal agreement8.
How Does The Prosecutor Prove You Engaged In lewd Acts/Sexual Intercourse In Exchange For Money?
- Defendant willfully engaged9 in sexual/lewd act for money.10.
- As defined, a sexual/lewd act includes: Purposely touching of body parts of another by either party for the purpose of sexual arousal11.
Based on the facts and circumstances surrounding your case, there can be various legal defenses that can be asserted on your behalf to fight a charge of prostitution under 647(b). Below, are some commonly used defenses:
The act of law enforcement officers or government agents inducing or encouraginga person to commit a crime when the potential criminal expresses a desire not to go ahead. Entrapment is an effective legal defense if the commission or encouragement of the criminal act originated with the police or government agents, instead of with the “criminal.”12
The local police department organizes a “sting” operation to eliminate prostitution online. Officer Law calls a number that he finds on a popular website and speaks with Lady. Lady says that she does not want to arrange with Officer Law, but Officer Law insists and tells her that he would just like to set up a time to talk with her. Lady, again, says no. Officer Law, again, insists that he just thought that he found her beautiful in the picture she posted and would just like to take her out to dinner. Lady agrees, and they meet at a restaurant. The two go to dinner and then to a hotel, where Officer Law puts money on the dresser, asks to have sex, and Lady undresses.
From the start, Lady never agreed to have sex with Officer Law in exchange for money and did not arrive at the hotel with the intent to engage in prostitution with Officer Law. Instead, Officer Law created the criminal scenario despite Lady’s repeated attempts to withdraw from any criminal activity.
Lack Of Evidence
A diligent and conscientious prostitution defense attorney can show the prosecutor that they do not have enough evidence to convict the Defendant under the law of 647(b). This can be done with mitigating evidence or proof that not all elements of the crime were met by showing that the evidence submitted is either insufficient or insubstantial.
If you are not a citizen, some criminal convictions under the penal code will result in mandatory immigration consequences.
A conviction under 647(b) does not impose mandatory immigration consequences.
What is An Aggravated Felony?
This is a predetermined category of crimes that, include both misdemeanor and felony offenses, which can bar a noncitizen from utilizing many different forms of immigration benefits.
If you are convicted of a crime that is automatically considered an aggravated felony, it will likely subject you to removal proceedings before an immigration judge. Here, a conviction under 647(b), depending on the circumstances, may be considered an aggravated felony.
What Are Crimes Of Moral Turpitude?
This includes crimes which are considered to be objectively morally inexcusable, which includes both misdemeanor and felony offenses. Any offense which is “shocking to the conscious” of the average person can bar a noncitizen from utilizing many different forms of immigration benefits.
If you are convicted of a crime that is automatically considered a crime of moral turpitude, it will likely subject you to removal proceedings before an immigration judge.
Is Prostitution A Crime Of Moral Turpitude?
A conviction under pc 647(b), depending on the circumstances is a crime of moral turpitude.
For a review of offenses categorized as “aggravated felonies” or “crimes of moral turpitude” under immigration law, click here: http://www.ilrc.org/files/documents/ilrc-ca_chart__notes-2013-03_05.pdf.
A charge under 647(b) is typically:
- Not eligible for anDeferred Entry of Judgmentsentence, and
- Not eligible for Proposition 36 sentences.
A charge under 647(b) typically:
- Is eligible for an Expungementafter the completion of probation,
- Is not a strikeable offense,
- Does not affect voting, jury service, ability to carry a firearm, and
- Does not require Registration as a sex offender.
Although charges under 647(b) are misdemeanor in nature, however, the length of probation and custody time may vary based on prior offenses committed. All convictions under California Penal Code section 647(b) require that the defendant submit to AIDS testing and receive formal AIDS education. The following punishment, or combination of punishments, can be imposed under 647(b) for prostitution:
Charges Dismissed! I was charged with prostitution and really scared. The Aizman Law Firm got my charges dismissed. P.W., A Prostitution ClientRead more testimonials
|Fines||Not to exceed $1,000|
|Jail||0-180 days for first offense|
|Mandatory Aids Testing||Yes|
Except as provided in subdivision (l), every person who commits any of the following acts is guilty of disorderly conduct, a misdemeanor: (a) who solicits anyone to engage in or who engages in lewd or dissolute conduct in any public place or in any place open to the public or exposed to public view.
Every person who willfully and lewdly, either: (1) Exposes his person, or the private parts thereof, in any public place, or in any place where there are present other persons to be offended or annoyed thereby; or, (2) Procures, counsels, or assists any person so to expose himself or take part in any model artist exhibition, or to make any other exhibition of himself to public view, or the view of any number of persons, such as is offensive to decency, or is adapted to excite to vicious or lewd thoughts or acts, is guilty of a misdemeanor.
It is unlawful for any person to do either of the following :(1) Direct, supervise, recruit, or otherwise aid another person in the commission of a violation of subdivision (b) of Section 647 or subdivision (a) of Section 653.22. (2) Collect or receive all or part of the proceeds earned from an act or acts of prostitution committed by another person in violation of subdivision (b) of Section 647.
It is unlawful for any person to loiter in any public place with the intent to commit prostitution. This intent is evidenced by acting in a manner and under circumstances which openly demonstrate the purpose of inducing, enticing, or soliciting prostitution, or procuring another to commit prostitution.
Human Trafficking – PC 236.1.
Any person who deprives or violates the personal liberty of another with the intent to obtain forced labor or services, is guilty of human trafficking and shall be punished by imprisonment in the state prison for 5, 8, or 12 years and a fine of not more than $500,000. (b) Any person who deprives or violates the personal liberty of another with the intent to effect or maintain a violation of Section 266, 266h, 266i, 266j, 267, 311.1, 311.2, 311.3, 311.4, 311.5, 311.6, or 518 is guilty of human trafficking and shall be punished by imprisonment in the state prison for 8, 14, or 20 years and a fine of not more than $500,000.
Next Steps If You Need Help
With the knowledge and expertise of the Aizman Law Firm on your side, a Los Angeles prostitution attorney can help to broker a charge reduction to a lesser offense in your case, eliminate any required custody as a part of your sentence, or strategically develop valid legal defenses to attempt to garner a dismissal, or reduction of the charges.
If you have been arrested and would like to learn more about how attorneys charge.
If you want to understand why its important to have an attorney represent you.
If you would like to discuss a pending case with an attorney contact the Aizman Law Firm at 818-351-9555 for a free confidential consultation.
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- Except as provided in subdivision (l), every person who commits any of the following acts is guilty of disorderly conduct, a misdemeanor: (b) Who solicits or who agrees to engage in or who engages in any act of prostitution. A person agrees to engage in an act of prostitution when, with specific intent to so engage, he or she manifests an acceptance of an offer or solicitation to so engage, regardless of whether the offer or solicitation was made by a person who also possessed the specific intent to engage in prostitution. No agreement to engage in an act of prostitution shall constitute a violation of this subdivision unless some act, in addition to the agreement, is done within this state in furtherance of the commission of an act of prostitution by the person agreeing to engage in that act. As used in this subdivision, “prostitution” includes any lewd act between persons for money or other consideration.
- Prostitution Deﬁned. Pen. Code, § 647(b); People v. Hill (1980) 103 Cal.App.3d 525, 534–535 [163 Cal.Rptr. 99]; Wooten v. Superior Court (2001) 93 Cal.App.4th 422, 431–433 [113 Cal.Rptr.2d 195] [lewd act requires touching between prostitute and customer]
- Solicitation Requires Speciﬁc Intent. People v. Norris (1978) 88 Cal.App.3d Supp. 32, 38 [152 Cal.Rptr. 134]; People v. Love (1980) 111 Cal.App.3d Supp. 1, 13 [168 Cal.Rptr. 591]; People v. Dell (1991) 232 Cal.App.3d 248, 264 [283 Cal.Rptr. 361).
- Person Solicited Must Receive Communication. People v. Saephanh (2000) 80 Cal.App.4th 451, 458–459 [94 Cal.Rptr.2d 910]
- Prostitution Deﬁned. Pen. Code, § 647(b); People v. Hill (1980) 103 Cal.App.3d 525, 534–535 [163 Cal.Rptr. 99]; Wooten v. Superior Court (2001) 907 0199
- Speciﬁc Intent Required. Pen. Code, § 647(b)., California Code
- Act in Furtherance May Precede Agreement. In re Cheri T. (1999) 70 Cal.App.4th 1400, 1407–1408 [83 Cal.Rptr.2d 397]; contra, People v. Davis (1988) 201 Cal.App.3d Supp. 1, 4–5 [247 Cal.Rptr. 359]
- Act in Furtherance May Consist of Words Alone. Kim v. Superior Court (People) (2006) 136 Cal.App.4th 937, 945].
- Willfully Deﬁned. Pen. Code, § 7(1); People v. Lara (1996) 44 Cal.App.4th 102, 107[51 Cal.Rptr.2d 402]
- CAL CRIM 1153, California Penal Code section 647(b), California Penal Code section 7(1), Wooten v. Superior Court (2001) 93 Cal. App. 4th 422 [113 Cal. Rptr. 2d 195]
- Lewd Conduct Deﬁned. Pryor v. Municipal Court (1979) 25 Cal.3d 238, 256 [158 Cal.Rptr. 330, 599 P.2d 636]