“Prostitution” is defined by Florida law as offering, soliciting or coercing a person into performing sexual acts for hire. Prostitution is illegal in almost every state in the U.S., including Florida. “Solicitation” is the act of asking or directing someone to exchange money for sexual activity.
An actual sexual act or actual exchange of money is not required in order to be charged with “solicitation of prostitution.” The mere act of asking a person to engage in a sexual act for hire is sufficient. Therefore, a person can be convicted for solicitation based on words alone, without any physical evidence.
A first time offense is considered a second-degree misdemeanor, the second offense a first-degree misdemeanor, and a third or subsequent violation is a third-degree felony. In Florida, the sentence for a prostitution or solicitation conviction can include jail time, large fines, probation, community service and mandatory counseling. In some cases, the offender’s driver license may be automatically revoked. A first-time conviction of prostitution or solicitation is punishable by up to a $500 fine and 60 days in jail. The second offense is punishable by a minimum fine of $1000 and one year in jail.
The charges are even more serious for coercing or forcing another person into prostitution. Forcing or coercing another person into prostitution is a third-degree felony under Florida law. In addition, if the victim is under the age of 18, you can be convicted of a second-degree felony.
If you are facing a prostitution or solicitation charge in Florida, Anidjar & Levine’s experienced and knowledgeable criminal defense attorneys are available to help. Depending on the case, an attorney may be able to get the charges against you dismissed, or help you avoid a conviction. Anidjar & Levine is committed to giving you the best representation possible.