Prostitution is illegal in Georgia, and anyone participating in the act of prostitution, such as soliciting services, is punishable by law. Often of greater concern for a person charged with solicitation is the social and professional repercussions such an allegation could have. Solicitation is considered a sex offense that carries serious criminal charges and could result in hefty fines and possible jail time. The consequences of a solicitation charge may be far-reaching and could damage relationships as well as put the accused at risk of having a criminal record that may make their life more difficult in the long-term.
An Atlanta solicitation lawyer can provide the legal defense that you need to negotiate the charges and sentencing for your case with the professionalism and discretion you deserve. An experienced Atlanta defense attorney will best be able to build a proper defense for your case. En Español.
Solicitation and Pandering Charges
Given that prostitution is illegal, solicitation is also listed as a sex offense under Georgia Code of Law called pandering. Solicitation falls into the section O.C.G.A. § 16-6-12, which states that a person commits the crime of pandering when they “solicit a person to perform an act of prostitution on their behalf.”
Pandering could also mean a person has solicited an act of prostitution on behalf of another or has gathered a group of people with the intent to solicit prostitution. It is important to understand that a solicitation charge is about the request and not the act of prostitution, meaning that discussing the services and cost with a prostitute is also against the law. Thus, soliciting prostitution may be charged and convicted whether or not the person arrested has received any services or exchanged payment.
The prosecution must work to prove that the defendant had a serious intent to commit the act by agreeing to compensate for the service, which is simplified if the defendant offered monetary payment. Given the way solicitation charges are handled, an Atlanta solicitation attorney should be brought on to represent the case sooner rather than later to avoid compromising the possibility of reducing or dismissing charges by misspeaking or acting in any way that could further implicate the person accused.
The act of pandering or soliciting prostitution is charged in Georgia as a misdemeanor of a high and aggravated nature, and the charge could be upgraded to a felony if it can be proved the person soliciting services was aware the prostitute was a minor or was a victim of human trafficking.
A person convicted of a misdemeanor of a high and aggravated nature in Georgia will be punished with a fine of up to $5,000 and up to a year in county jail. The fine will increase by $2,5000 if the act of prostitution was solicited within 1,000 feet of a place frequented by children under the age of 17 such as a school, recreational center, playground, or a place of worship. For a solicitation felony conviction that implicates a minor or a victim of human trafficking, the defendant could face five to 20 years in prison and fines reaching as much as $10,000.
In addition, when a verdict is reached, the defendant of a solicitation charge will be required to submit a court-mandated sexually transmitted disease test. If the defendant is married, the results of this test will be shared with their spouse. A solicitation or pandering offense can also result in the forfeiture of a motor vehicle used in the act.
A person charged with pandering or solicitation of sex should seek a solicitation attorney in Atlanta immediately to formulate a robust legal defense to mitigate the possible charges and sentencing. The faster and more efficiently a case is argued, the faster the defendant can move on with their life.
Working with a Solicitation Attorney
In a criminal case of solicitation of prostitution, it is in the defendant’s best interest to build a solid defense quickly to negotiate to effectively reduce charges and sentencing. Legal counsel will be necessary to do so as an experienced pandering attorney in Atlanta can work on strategies and arguments based on first-hand experience with other cases and an intimate knowledge of the Georgia Code of Law.
With all that is at risk legally and personally after being charged with solicitation, it is critical to be well-armed with the best defense possible to handle the case and to manage damage done to reputations, professional connections, and personal relationships. An Atlanta solicitation lawyer can fight for you and provide the knowledge and support you need to defend your case.