New York skyline and picture of Attorneys
Former New York Prosecutors Aggressive Representation With Over 30 Years of Experience
The National Trial Lawyers
AVVO
AVVO
AVVO
AVVO
AVVO
Expertise

Prostitution and Related Offenses

A person is guilty of prostitution (PL 230.00) when he/she engages or agrees or offers to engage in sexual conduct with another person in return for a fee. Note that a person need not actually complete the sexual act to be guilty of this Class B misdemeanor – the mere offer or agreement is criminal. Also, a person is guilty of Patronizing a Prostitute when he pays, agrees to pay, or solicits a prostitute for sexual conduct in exchange for a fee. There are four degrees of the crime of Patronizing a Prostitute – ranging from a Class B misdemeanor to Class D felony – that depend upon the age of the prostitute that is patronized; the most serious level involves the patronization of a prostitute younger than eleven.

In addition, however, the police can arrest someone for “working the streets” as a prostitute or for actively shopping for a prostitute. Indeed, a person can be guilty of Loitering for the Purpose of Engaging in a Prostitution Offense if he/she remains or wanders about in a public place and repeatedly beckons to, or repeatedly stops, or repeatedly attempts to stop, or repeatedly attempts to engage passers-by in conversation, or repeatedly stops or attempts to stop motor vehicles, or repeatedly interferes with the free passage of others persons for the purpose of prostitution or patronizing a prostitute (PL 240.37). This charge is a violation – i.e. a non-criminal offense – for first-time offenders, but becomes a Class B misdemeanor thereafter.

It is also a crime to act as a pimp or madam. Specifically, the four degrees of Promoting Prostitution make it illegal to knowingly advance or profit from prostitution. First Degree Promoting Prostitution (230.32) makes it a Class B felony to knowingly advance or profit from prostitution of a person less than eleven years old, whereas Second Degree (230.30) makes it a Class C felony to knowingly advance or profit from prostitution of a person less than sixteen years old and Third Degree makes it a Class D felony to promote a prostitute less than nineteen years old (230.25). Furthermore, it is a Class B felony to knowingly advance or profit from prostitution that is compelled through force or intimidation (230.30). Finally, managing, supervising, or owning a brothel or “house of prostitution” – and thereby profiting from the prostitution of two or more persons – can subject a person to arrest for Promoting Prostitution in the Third Degree, a Class D felony (230.25).

Key Penal Law Provisions:

  • Prostitution, PL 230.00, a class B misdemeanor
  • Loitering for the purpose of engaging in a prostitution offense, PL 240.37, a violation or class B misdemeanor or class A misdemeanor
  • Patronizing a prostitute in the fourth degree, PL 230.03, a class B misdemeanor
  • Patronizing a prostitute in the third degree, PL 230.04, a class A misdemeanor
  • Patronizing a prostitute in the second degree, PL 230.05, a class E felony
  • Patronizing a prostitute in the first degree, PL 230.06 a class D felony
  • Promoting prostitution in the fourth degree, PL 230.20, a class A misdemeanor
  • Promoting prostitution in the third degree, PL 230.25, a class D felony
  • Promoting prostitution in the second degree, PL 230.30, a class C felony
  • Promoting prostitution in the first degree, PL 230.32, a class B felony
Contact Us

Free Consultation

Available 24/7

Se Habla Español

Fill out the form or call us at (212) 323-7409 to schedule your free consultation.