Prostitution Crimes in Florida
Prostitution is often dubbed one of the oldest professions in the world. However, that does not take away from the fact that prostitution is illegal throughout Florida. On December 1, it was reported that Flagler County officers arrested 12 men for soliciting prostitution during a three-day sting operation known as “Operation Red Light to Green Roof.” The undercover sting operation was formed after the police received complaints about prostitution ads on Backpage.com.
Prostitution is rarely entered into freely and is often linked to physical and psychological abuse, drug dependence, and human trafficking. To combat these issues and others, state and federal law enforcement officers throughout Florida take finding and prosecuting individuals involved with prostitution seriously. If you have been charged with a prostitution offense contact an experienced Florida sex crime defense lawyer right away.
Florida Prostitution Law
Numerous Florida statutes prohibit various prostitution-related activities, including:
- 796.07 – Prohibiting prostitution and related acts: Under subsection 2(e), it is illegal for an adult to commit, offer to commit, or engage in prostitution. Subsection 2(f) states it is illegal to solicit, induce, entice, or procure another to commit prostitution. As an adult, you cannot offer sexual activity for profit or offer to pay for sexual activity with another. A first time violation for 2(e) is a second-degree misdemeanor while a violation of 2(f) is a first-degree misdemeanor. Under this statute, it is also illegal to maintain and operate a place for the purpose of prostitution, to offer to secure a place for prostitution to occur, or to receive a person in any place for the purpose of prostitution and let that person remain there. A first offense of any of these crimes is a second-degree misdemeanor.
- 796.04 – Forcing, compelling, or coercing another to become a prostitute: If there is evidence that you forced, compelled, or coerced another person to become a prostitute, then you may be charged with a third-degree felony.
- 796.05 – Deriving support from the proceeds of prostitution: You are not allowed to financially benefit from prostitution even if you are not a direct party to the crime. It is unlawful for anyone with reasonable belief or knowing another person is engaged in prostitution to live or derive support or maintenance from what is believed to be earnings from prostitution. A first-time offense of this crime is a second-degree felony.
- 796.001 – Offenses by adults involving minors: If an adult is found to be involved with minors in regard to a prostitution offense, then the legislature dictates the adults should be prosecuted under other statutes, such as human trafficking, sexual battery (rape), voyeurism, lewdness, indecent exposure, child abuse, and obscenity.
Potential Penalties for Prostitution Offenses
If you are charged with a prostitution or other sex crime, you need to speak with an Orlando criminal defense attorney about the penalties you face if you are convicted. You could be sentenced to months in jail for a misdemeanor or years in prison for a felony. You may also have to live under probation, pay high fines and court fees, complete classes, drug and/or alcohol rehabilitation, and community service.
Let Our Florida Criminal Defense Lawyers Help You
If you are facing one or more criminal charges related to prostitution, contact the experienced and proven Kissimmee prostitution defense lawyers of Salazar & Kelly Law Group, P.A. at 407-483-0500. We will thoroughly review your case and build you the strongest defense possible under the law.