In Florida, the solicitation of a person for sexual acts is illegal. If you are convicted of this crime, the consequences of it can be potentially severe, causing a ripple effect that can impact both your personal and professional life. Additionally, you could face jail time, fines, or both. If you are facing prostitution charge, it is crucial to contact an experienced criminal defense attorney as soon as possible to protect your rights and your future. At the Law Office of Michael Mirer, P.A., our skilled team is experienced in handling a vast range of sex crimes and has the knowledge and savvy necessary to defend you against these charges.
What is Solicitation of Prostitution?
In Florida, one can be charged with solicitation if he or she bribes, requests, encourages, or commands an individual to engage in sex acts. However, that person does not have to be a prostitute for this charge to apply. Furthermore, money does not need to exchange hands, nor is it necessary for the sex act to be committed, or for the solicited person to be willing or able to commit any sex acts in order for the solicitor to be charged with the crime. What matters is that the offer of money was made. If convicted, this offense will be treated as a misdemeanor.
For example, if an undercover police officer was solicited for sex, that person could still be charged with solicitation and, in fact, many individuals are often charged with this crime in undercover scenarios.
The Penalties of a Prostitution Charge
For first-time offenders, soliciting a prostitute is a second-degree misdemeanor, for which the punishment could be a fine of up to $500, 60 days in jail, or both. Second offenses are treated as first-degree misdemeanors, for which the punishment could be up to a year in jail, a fine of up to $1,000, or both.
Subsequent offenses are considered third-degree felonies. This could result in some pretty hefty penalties, including a fine of up to $5,000, up to 5 years in prison, or both.
However, if the person being solicited for sex is a minor, the charges will likely be much more severe and increased by one degree. For example, if your prostitution charge would have been a first-degree misdemeanor, but you solicited a minor, it would become a third-degree felony.
Florida not only imposes criminal penalties, but civil ones as well. If you are charged with solicitation for prostitution, under Florida’s Statute on Prostitution, you would be subject to a $5,000 civil penalty if the violation results in a disposition by the court other than a dismissal of charges or an acquittal. Successfully handling these types of charges is critical in avoiding the civil financial penalty.
Other consequences of such charges can include:
- Publicity of the crime through local media
- Required health test
- If your vehicle was used in the crime, it will be impounded
- Trouble with employment
Building a Defense
Every prostitution charge contains a different and unique set of circumstances, so it is crucial to consult with a skilled criminal defense attorney to tailor a defense that is most effective for you. However, some possible defenses might include:
- You were lured to partake in a crime you would not have otherwise committed
- Mistakes were made by law enforcement during the investigation process
- You were not read your Miranda Rights
Miami Criminal Defense Attorney
If you are facing criminal charges for prostitution, it is crucial that you get experienced legal representation as soon as possible to safeguard your future and ensure you are not railroaded by the prosecution team. At the Law Office of Michael Mirer, P.A., we provide aggressive defensive strategies that can help reduce, acquit, or completely dismiss charges against you.
Do not leave your future up to chance. Sex crimes are among some of the most serious criminal offenses, which is why you need to work with an attorney who is experienced in handling such matters. Attorney Michael Mirer has over 10 years of experience as a trial attorney, which he will use to your advantage.
Call our office today at (800) 798-0243 to learn more about what we can do for you!