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Prostitution & Solicitation Attorneys in Cleveland

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Engaging in prostitution or soliciting prostitution is a sex crime under Ohio law. Unfortunately, because these charges are classified as sex crimes, a conviction could lead to prison time, expensive fines, and becoming a registered sex offender. If you are facing charges for engaging in prostitution or solicitation, you need a team of Cleveland prostitution defense lawyers on your side to fight for your rights throughout your case.

Our team at HMW Lawhas spent decades defending our clients from serious penalties when facing charges involving prostitution. If you are facing criminal charges, you deserve a prostitution lawyer who understands the Ohio criminal justice system and can reduce or remove the penalties you are facing. For a free consultation from a member of our experienced team, contact our law firm by calling 216-369-1352 today.

How Does Ohio Law Define Solicitation?

The Ohio revised code defines solicitation for prostitution as intentionally attempting to compel, persuade, induce, or encourage another person to participate in sexual activity for hire or to receive compensation. Although this charge generally involves exchanging money, individuals can still be charged with prostitution if drugs, goods, or other services are exchanged for sexual activities. Individuals may still be charged with solicitation charges if the person they attempted to solicit was not a sex worker.

Payment does not have to be made directly to the person engaging in prostitution. You may still be charged with solicitation if you pay a person who is human trafficking the individual or another person associated with the individual.

Solicitation charges aim to punish individuals who pay for sexual activity. Engaging in prostitution will likely result in prostitution charges. However, both types of charges can result in strict penalties for either party.

What Are the Potential Penalties for Prostitution or Solicitation?

Soliciting a prostitute is typically classified as a third-degree felony. This charge can carry up to 60 days in jail and fines of up to $500. If prostitution actually does occur, you could be charged with compelling prostitution. You could face up to five years in prison and a fine of up to $10,000 for a conviction.

Soliciting or compelling prostitution from a person who is between 16 and 18 years old is a second-degree felony. This type of felony can lead to two to eight years in prison and fines of up to $15,000.

Compelling prostitution from a person who is younger than 16 years old is a first-degree felony and can lead to ten years in prison plus fines of up to $20,000. If the prostitute were a minor, you would be required to register as a sex offender regardless of whether or not you knew their age at the time of the offense.

Because these charges are sex crimes, you could face other collateral consequences, including:

  • Losing your job. Going to jail or prison can lead to job loss, as it will require you to take time off work.
  • Difficulty getting a new job. A conviction will stay on your criminal record and will show up on any background check done by a potential employer.
  • Immigration issues. A felony conviction can lead to a denial of immigration or naturalization proceedings.

No matter what the circumstances of your case are, it is essential to get an experienced prostitution lawyer on your side when facing these types of charges. For more information, contact our legal team today.

Are Diversion Programs Available for Prostitution and Solicitation Charges?

If you are a first-time offender, you may be able to apply for a diversion program. Diversion programs allow offenders to complete classes and educational programs rather than serving jail or prison time. If you are eligible for a diversion program, you must apply with help from our legal team.

During your diversion program, you will likely learn about the health risks of solicitation and more information about what sex workers go through in their industry. If you complete the terms of the diversion program, you can ask that your charges be reduced or dropped to avoid a permanent criminal record.

What Are the Possible Defenses to a Prostitution and Solicitation Charge?

Prostitution and solicitation charges have the potential to negatively impact your life in many ways. However, our Cleveland prostitution defense lawyers can create a personalized legal defense strategy that’s right for you. By investigating the circumstances of your charges and your criminal history, we will create a solid defense strategy to reduce or remove your charges.

Potential defenses for your criminal charges include:

  • The agreement was too ambiguous. To be convicted of solicitation charges, there must have been a clear agreement or offer to exchange money or valuables for sexual activity. If no clear offer or agreement exists, the prosecution does not have enough evidence to convict you of this offense.
  • There was no sexual conduct. If no sexual activity occurred or there was no payment exchange, our team could argue that solicitation did not happen.
  • There was a mistake. Perhaps you had no real intention to solicit prostitution, and the entire case against you is a misunderstanding.

What Can a Criminal Defense Attorney Do for My Case?

Criminal charges for prostitution or solicitation can lead to serious penalties. If you want to protect your future and your freedom, our team of defense attorneys will build you a unique defense strategy to reduce or remove your penalties.

At HMW Law, we understand how overwhelming it can be to face criminal charges. We are committed to fighting for your rights and answering your legal questions. For more information about how we can help you, contact us by calling 216-369-1352.