Prostitution Laws and Promoting Prostitution
Prostitution is defined in New York Penal Code §230.00 as any exchange of a sexual act for a fee. Prostitution also applies if a person merely attempts to make this exchange. Therefore, even if a person never carries out the act, if they had arranged to do so, the State can press charges.
Prostitution is a class B misdemeanor. This means that if a person is facing prostitution charges, the maximum jail sentence is only three months in prison or up to one-year probation.
Far more serious are accusations of promoting prostitution. According to New York Penal Code §230.20, a person promotes prostitution if they knowingly profit in any way from another’s act of prostitution. They can also face these charges if they distribute materials advertising prostitution services. This is a class A misdemeanor that can carry a maximum jail sentence of one year.
The most serious allegations involving prostitution are felony level charges. These involve keeping the property for prostitution, forcing others into the act, advertising the use of minors for prostitution, or sex trafficking.
Any allegation of prostitution is a serious matter. One of our dedicated Albany prostitution attorneys could help you understand the nature of your charges and how to prepare an effective defense.
Affirmative Defense Against Prostitution in Albany
New York law provides for an affirmative defense against charges of prostitution. An affirmative defense means that the accused admits to the alleged illegal conduct, but argues that their actions were permitted by law.
New York Penal Code §230.01 states that an affirmative defense to prostitution is proof that the person was compelled to participate in prostitution through another’s acts or through sex trafficking. It is solely the responsibility of the defendant in these cases to prove an affirmative defense. Our team of aggressive lawyers can help the accused argue this defense when appropriate.