Unlike our Nevada neighbors to the east, prostitution has still not been legalized in the State of California. Yet, that may all change soon. A lawsuit was recently filed in the U.S. District Court in San Francisco that seeks to overturn California's law banning prostitution. The organization, Erotic Service Provider Legal, Education, and Research Project argues that the law violates their First Amendment rights. They also argue that the anti-prostitution and solicitation laws impinge upon the due process rights in the Fourteenth Amendment.
What is Prostitution and Solicitation?
In California, the law prohibits both prostitution and the solicitation of prostitution. Prostitution is defined as engaging in sexual acts in exchanged for money or other considerations. Solicitation is defined as agreeing to pay money or goods to another person in exchange for performing sexual acts. It is important to remember that a person does not have to actually perform the sexual act or pay money in order to be arrested for solicitation or prostitution.
This is not the first time San Francisco voters were introduced to the idea of legalizing prostitution. In 2008, voters defeated an initiative decriminalizing prostitution by a narrow margin. Yet, times have changed and voters may be more inclined to view prostitution and solicitation as a "choice" and one that people have a right to pursue. Not everyone agrees, however. Many women advocates argue that prostitution is just modern day slavery and legalizing it would be criminal.
Contact Our Oakland Sex Crimes Attorneys
If you or someone you love has been arrested for soliciting a prostitute or for prostitution, it is important to begin building your case immediately. It is still illegal in California to engage in prostitution or solicit a prostitute; therefore, you need a criminal defense lawyer immediately. Call the Oakland sex crimes lawyers at the Law Offices of Nabiel C. Ahmed today for a free initial consultation. Call today at (510) 907-6600 or fill out our confidential contact form for more information.