Soliciting a sexual act in exchange for payment falls into the class of sex crimes with other laws regarding prostitution. These crimes are taken seriously in Georgia and the punishments for soliciting prostitution reflect that. In Georgia, this is known as pandering.
Apart from sentencing that could include fines, prison time, a criminal record and possible registry as a sex offender, the social and professional damage that a solicitation charge could have are extremely difficult to overcome.
When facing charges for solicitation, you will need a criminal defense lawyer who is sensitive to these types of cases and who has the experience necessary to defend your case. A Gwinnett County solicitation lawyer will fight to protect your rights and will have the expertise required to negotiate on your behalf to possibly reduce charges and sentencing.
Solicitation is a crime related to prostitution in Georgia, described as pandering. The law states that a person is guilty of the crime of pandering if they solicit an act of prostitution for themselves or on behalf of another person. Pandering may also relate to the act of gathering a group of people to solicit acts of prostitution.
Pandering may also cause a forfeiture of a vehicle, where the state may try and seize an automobile.
Georgia laws stipulate that for prostitution-related sex crimes like solicitation, the person accused can be charged even if the act was not carried out nor money or objects of value exchanged. The mere intent to solicit prostitution is a crime in Georgia and will be charged in court.
If money was exchanged prior to receiving the sexual act and this can be proven by prosecution, it may be easier to find the defendant guilty. However, if there is no physical evidence that the person was soliciting prostitution services, it may be easier to fight the charges and disprove guilt. Most of these cases are “sting” operations where the prostitute is an undercover police officer.
No matter what the exact scenario is, a lawyer who is well-versed in law and can help their client construct a solid defense will be a critical resource to fight the case. Having legal guidance from a Gwinnett County solicitation lawyer in the days immediately following a charge is especially important to avoid self-incrimination in this highly emotional period as the repercussions begin to take effect.
Consequences and Penalties
Solicitation is considered a misdemeanor of a high and aggravated nature, which will be penalized with up to a twelve months in prison and a fine of as much as $5,000. The fine will increase by $2,500 if the crime took place within a thousand feet of a place where there are children and minors, such as a school, playground, or center of worship.
If a minor or a victim of sex trafficking was involved in the prostitution, whether the defendant knew this fact at the time, the charge will be elevated to a felony, which, if convicted, could mean five to 20 years in prison and fines of up to $10,000.
The defendant in a solicitation charge will also be required to submit a test for sexually transmitted diseases mandated by the court, and the results will be sent to their spouse. This can further damage the relationship if it has already been strained considering the charges.
A conviction will also mean a criminal record and possibly having to register as a sex offender, which will cause problems getting jobs and finding housing for life. In addition, publication of the individual’s picture in the local newspaper is required as well. To avoid such penalties, it is crucial that an individual hire a Gwinnett County solicitation attorney as soon as possible.
Contacting a Lawyer
When facing criminal charges for solicitation of prostitution, it is of utmost importance to have a knowledgeable Gwinnett County solicitation attorney. Dismissing or reducing these charges and the sentencing can be possible with a solid legal strategy in place and a lawyer who will fight for their client no matter what.
The laws regarding solicitation can be complicated, and having someone who knows their way around these laws will prove to be vital to avoid the heavy sentences that may be levied for a conviction.
When there is so much at stake personally and professionally, you will want to have the best solicitation lawyer that Gwinnett County can offer to defend your rights in this difficult time.