Prostitution is illegal in Nassau County, and it’s illegal in every state in the United States with the exception of Nevada. Prostitution is easily defined as the act of exchanging sexual favors or intercourse for money. Only some areas of Nevada allow this business in a legal capacity, and the laws are strict regarding what it means to engage in this type of business even there. In Nassau County, prostitution is not legal in any capacity, but the laws, the penalties, and the defenses fall into several very grey areas. There is no one size fits all punishment for this illegal activity. It depends on who is paying for it, how many times someone has been arrested in the past, if someone is paying for it or providing it, and many other factors. If you’re in need of a criminal attorney to help fight a prostitution charge, this is what you must know about prostitution.
Prostitution Punishments in New York
Prostitution occurs when someone agrees to exchange sexual favors for money and/or goes through with the act including the exchange of funds. In New York, the law only targets those who sell sex under the prostitution laws, which means those who buy it aren’t going to face prostitution charges. Those who purchase sex for money are going to be charged with something called patronizing, which does not fall into the same category as prostitution.
In most cases, prostitution is a class B misdemeanor. It’s going to elicit various types of punishment depending on the specifics of the case being heard.
– Up to three months in jail
– Fines up to $500
– Up to one year in jail if it’s in a school zone
– Fines of up to $1,000 if it’s in a school zone
When it comes down to patronizing prostitution in New York, it’s a class E felony punishable by several worse sentences when the prostitute is younger than 14. Anyone who engages in this type of patronizing is going to spend up to four years in prison and pay as much as $5,000 in fines. If the child is younger than 11, the charges are upgraded to a class D felony with fines up to $5,000 and up to 7 years in prison.
Anyone who is patronizing a prostitute under the age of 17 is automatically sex offenders registered within the State of New York. Both selling and purchasing sex or sexual acts for money is called prostitution, and it’s illegal in New York, but there are several ways to defend a crime of this nature with the help of a criminal attorney.
There’s fewer ways to defend prostitution in New York, because the evidence is typically evident and clear. Denial is one way to say it never happened and use this as a defense, but most people caught patronizing or selling sex are doing so to someone who is either undercover or working to crack down on this kind of behavior. If money is seen exchanging hands, it’s difficult to defend a crime of this nature.
Age Defense – Anyone charged with patronizing a prostitute in Nassau County can defend their actions by stating they didn’t realize the prostitute was underage. It’s easy enough to defend this when the person doing the patronizing doesn’t realize the age of the person he or she is patronizing. Simple denial in this case is difficult to argue with, and it can result in less serious charges and punishments.
Lack of Intent – If there is not verifiable proof that money exchanged hands and it was agreed upon prior to a sexual encounter, it cannot be charged as prostitution or patronizing. Those who are engaged in an act that didn’t include a conversation about money upfront can state they didn’t intend for this act to occur as a form of prostitution or patronizing.
No Money Exchanged Hands – Another common defense is the lack of monetary exchange. Even if it’s agreed upon prior to the act, no money changing hands cannot be counted as prostitution. This might occur when a john decides not to pay or a prostitute doesn’t stick around for a payment.
Entrapment – Undercover police officers often play the role of a prostitute to catch those engaging in the crime. If they are overly pushy and make people nervous or scare them into saying yes to something they might not usually say yes to out of fear, it can be considered entrapment.
Prostitution is illegal, but it happens all the time. Those arrested and charged with the act usually find their fine or prison term is short and simple the first time they are charged. It’s subsequent arrests that make it more difficult for people to get off lightly. Call a criminal defense attorney to help you with your prostitution case. If it’s a patronizing case, you’ll still need to call an attorney for legal help defending a case where prostitution is involved.