Georgia law enforcement takes sex crimes in Atlanta seriously, including prostitution, which is when an exchange of some type of payment occurs for a sexual act or favor from another person. A prostitution charge in Atlanta could relate to many aspects of the act itself, and if convicted, penalties under State laws may include fines, incarceration, and a criminal record as a sex offender. Local police department stings tend to bring in the largest number of people providing sexual services or who engage in prostitution, and these busts get a LOT of publicity.
With so much at stake, a charge for prostitution in Atlanta GA should be handled with the guidance and knowledge of a criminal defense attorney Atlanta. This article focuses on the metro Atlanta area, and the representation of clients by Larry Kohn, veteran criminal justice attorney.
An experienced Atlanta prostitution lawyer can bring sensitivity and confidentiality to your case to deal with it swiftly and effectively. An attorney will be able to diminish the negative effects a prostitution charge could have on your life.
Georgia law states that the crime of prostitution occurs when a person…
- Offers to perform , or
- Consents to give
…another person some type of sexual act. This may be a type of sexual intercourse, vaginal or anal, or money for an act of sodomy. Cash need not be exchanged., since other items of value may be the “payment.”. Completion of the sexual act is not required for a criminal charge to be brought. The offer of sex, or the agreement to perform the sex act is enough.
As America learned from the Monica Lewinsky-Bill Clinton scandal, denying “what sex is” gets you nowhere. The Georgia Legislature has enacted laws broadly criminalizing anything and everything to do with buying “sex.” Laws in the Peach State categorize a “sexual act” as a crime, which includes not only engaging on traditional sex, but performing masturbation and other forms of sexual contact or touching for money. Periodically, both state and federal authorities team up to bust an escort service, massage parlor or other thinly-veiled type of sex shop that offers pimping or performs prohibited acts.Defining a Prostitution Charge
Georgia Code of Law O.C.G.A. Title 16-6-9 lays out the definitions and penalties for prostitution, which is illegal in the state. Prostitution is defined as receiving any form of payment, either monetary or in objects of value, for offering or performing a sexual act.
Prostitution charges extend to those who participate in any aspect of the business of prostitution and not only those who offer sexual favors for money or in exchange for something of value. The purpose of prostitution is to make money for engaging in sex. It is important to understand the following details about prostitution and related acts in Atlanta:
- Prostitution can be punishable by law even if the sexual act has not been carried out nor payment exchanged.
- Soliciting prostitution in Atlanta is when a “john” asks for another person to perform a sexual act or acts in exchange for pay.
- Pimping is when a person offers to find a prostitute for another, agrees to arrange a meeting with a prostitute, provides transportation to facilitate the act of prostitution, receives remuneration related to prostitution, or oversees and directs an act of prostitution.
- Pandering relates to the solicitation of prostitution either directly or for another party, or it could be bringing people together with the intent to solicit prostitution.
- Operating a place of prostitution means offering use of or overseeing a property where prostitution is taking place.
- Offering masturbation for hire is a form of prostitution. Whether the act is carried out or not is immaterial.
- Giving a massage in a place of prostitution is considered a related crime.
Being caught participating in any part of prostitution may be a harrowing and traumatic experience, and the repercussions can have negative effects both socially and professionally because of the stigmas surrounding these crimes. Effectively pleading a case in court with the goal of having charges and sentencing reduced or dismissed requires the expertise of an Atlanta prostitution attorney who is well-versed in sex offense laws and who has experience handling these cases with discretion and professionalism.Potential Penalties
The Georgia Assembly details the penalties related to participation in prostitution, which can include costly fines and imprisonment. Minor sex offenses could be charged as misdemeanors, while more serious offenses will be tried as felonies that could mandate up to 30 years in prison, with fines reaching as much as $100,000 depending on the circumstances.
Legislators and law enforcement officers are aware that some people are forced into prostitution against their will. This fact, as much as anything, justifies having laws that protect those who have been victims of human trafficking. The greatest punishment, under Georgia laws, usually falls on the pimp (the person who is controlling and coordinating the prostitution) who has created an illegal business by using and selling prostitutes in Atlanta.
The allegations and penalties for a conviction could do irreversible damage to an image and reputation, as well as the harm it could have on relationships and your home life. Given how these crimes are viewed, law enforcement and judgment could be harsher than with other offenses, which is why it is crucial to enlist the services of a prostitution attorney in Atlanta who will defend an individual’s rights and fight to protect them from the negative outcomes of a conviction.Prostitution of Minors
Participating in any part of prostitution is against the law, but these crimes and penalties are significantly more severe when children under the age of 18 years old are involved. Fines are increased by several thousand dollars if these acts of prostitution take place within 1,000 feet of a school, playground, recreational area, or place of worship, where children could be exposed to these illicit activities.
For a person charged with pimping, pandering, or operating a place of prostitution where minors are implicated, the offense will be charged as a felony with the additional requirement to register as a sex offender, which will make it a lifelong struggle to find employment and housing. This makes it incredibly important for any individual involved with such a charge to consult with an Atlanta prostitution lawyer immediately.Penalties In Georgia For Prostitution
Prostitution is a misdemeanor crime that carries a fine of up to $2,500.00. The penalty can be greater if such an offense was committed within 1,000 feet of any school building, school grounds, public place of worship, or playground or recreation center which is used primarily by persons under the age of 17 years.
Further, the severity of misdemeanor penalties depends on the nature of the act and any prior criminal history of the person charged. A convicted person also faces fines, probation, jail time or state prison time (for felony prostitution crimes), community service, and possible participation in sex education classes.
Being arrested for prostitution in Georgia may be a mortifying and upsetting experience that should be dealt with by an attorney who has experience handling cases of sex crimes that demand understanding and the utmost professionalism. An Atlanta prostitution lawyer can help to ensure that your case is properly defended and that your rights and reputation are protected.
For some people in high-level jobs, political positions or religious affiliations, allegations of “sex for money” can have sweeping repercussions socially and professionally. The recent Robert Kraft arrest in Florida for sexual acts for money was announced shortly after the 2019 Superbowl in Atlanta, where the NFL team owner had been at the center of attention after the world’s most watched sporting event, after his Patriots team won its 6th NFL title.
As is commonly the case, the Kraft arrest brought into focus sex workers who were being forced into the sex work after being duped into thinking they would be employed in a nail salon in America. Instead, the sex “employees” were compelled to engage in sexual activity, as part of a larger sex trafficking ring. Now, activist groups seek banning him from NFL football, and forcing Kraft’s team to be sold.Hiring The Best Prostitution Criminal Defense Attorney Atlanta
Larry Kohn, an Atlanta criminal defense lawyer for over 20 years, knows how to beat a prostitution charge. First, review Mr. Kohn’s credentials below. Then, set up a FREE lawyer consultation with this Georgia Super Lawyer to review your case facts. Dial our office 24-7, and talk to Mr. Kohn about your pending prostitution case.
A prostitution charge should be handled swiftly and discreetly to minimize the effects that allegations of such a crime or a conviction on sex crimes could have on the accused. Social stigmas associated with offenses of this nature are deeply engrained in the Bible Belt states. Other countries (Amsterdam) and some places in America have legalized sex shops.