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Prostitution Ring Run by 16-Year-Old Girl Busted in California

Posted on in Criminal Defense

prostitution, San Jose prostitution lawyers, prostitution ring, California prostitution law, California prostitution casesIn May 2016, police officers arrested a 16-year-old girl in Hanford, California for running a prostitution ring involving 14- and 15-year-old girls. The girl’s prostitution ring was only in operation for a few weeks, but during that time she posted pictures of younger girls on prostitution websites and then drove the girls to a local hotel to engage in acts of prostitution, reports The Sacramento Bee. Recently, the girl was sentenced to serve 13 years in prison for the role that she played in pimping and trafficking teenage girls. In order to better understand this case, let us take a look at California’s main prostitution law and the various defenses that are commonly raised by those accused of violating it.

California’s Main Prostitution Law

California’s main prostitution law makes it a crime to (1) engage in an act of prostitution (aka selling sexual favors), (2) offer or agree to engage in an act of prostitution (aka soliciting prostitution), and (3) solicit customers for a prostitute (aka pandering/pimping). In other words, California law makes it illegal to be a prostitute, a “john," or a “pimp.” Specifically, under section 647(b) of the California Penal Code, it is a crime to solicit, agree to engage in, or engage in any act of prostitution with the intent to receive compensation (i.e. anything of value) from another person.

Defending Against a Prostitution-Related Charge

Being charged with a prostitution related offense is serious business in California. However, there are a variety of different ways to defend against such a charge. Some of the most commonly asserted defenses in California prostitution cases include:

  • Entrapment: It is illegal for an undercover law enforcement officer to use coercion, or some other overbearing tactic, in order to induce someone to commit a crime. Therefore, if a police officer illegally induced you to commit a prostitution related offense, then you can claim entrapment as a defense. However, please note that a police officer who simply offered you the opportunity to break the law has not entrapped you.

  • Insufficient Evidence: In the United States, criminal defendants are considered to be innocent until proven guilty. Therefore, if the prosecution fails to provide sufficient evidence in order to prove their case, you can then assert the defense of insufficient evidence.

  • Underage: Senate Bill 1322 decriminalizes the act of soliciting or engaging in an act of prostitution, under some situations, when such an act is committed by an underage person. Therefore, if you are a minor who has been charged with soliciting or engaging in an act of prostitution in California, then you may be able to assert the defense of being underage.

Let Us Help You with Your Case

Have you been accused of committing a prostitution related offense in California? If so, Jachimowicz Law Group is here to help. We represent clients throughout California who have been charged with prostituting themselves, soliciting prostitution, and pandering/pimping and we would be happy to assist you. To discuss your legal options with one of our experienced San Jose prostitution lawyers during a free initial consultation, reach out to us today.

Sources:

http://www.sacbee.com/news/local/crime/article159531089.html

https://leginfo.legislature.ca.gov/faces/codes_displaySection.xhtml?sectionNum=647.&lawCode=PEN

https://leginfo.legislature.ca.gov/faces/billNavClient.xhtml?bill_id=201520160SB1322

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