Despite the fact the society is inching towards a less conservative view on many issues, prostitution still continues to be a criminal offense in the US. While a few segments of the society view prostitution as a victimless crime, the US laws consider the practice and solicitation of prostitution as illegal. There are a few cities which have legalized prostitution but they still enact regulations and imposed some restrictions on the practice and those individuals involved in it.
But in the Commonwealth of Virginia, there are no exceptions to the rules, and all aspects of prostitution and other related activities are deemed illegal.
Crimes involving morals and decency are addressed in the Virginia Criminal Code Chapter 8. The code categorizes prostitution with offenses that are immoral but not considered criminal in today’s society. This includes “fornication,” “lewd and lascivious cohabitation,” and “adultery.” However, the code includes prostitution with more serious offenses such as indecent exposure, child pornography, and certain other serious sexual offenses.
What is Human Trafficking?
- Human trafficking is a criminal activity in which people profit from the control and exploitation of others.
- In Virginia, there are two forms of human trafficking – sex trafficking and labor trafficking.
- The most common human trafficking these days in Virginia is sex trafficking or prostitution.
- Sex trafficking / Prostitution is a serious offense in the Commonwealth of Virginia.
- Each state has different laws pertaining to sex trafficking; therefore, it is essential to know the state laws of Virginia if you are accused of it.
- Virginia state laws on sex trafficking are considered Substantive Criminal Laws.
- Laws on sex trafficking are found in Title 18 Chapter 4 of the Commonwealth’s laws, under the general section heading of Crimes Against the Person.
- Section 18.2-48 specifies many different actions that come under the purview of sex trafficking.
- This offense includes multiple counts of felonies and misdemeanors.
- Prostitution falls under the sex trafficking laws in Virginia. Under state law § 18.2-355, taking a person for prostitution or other illegal sexual acts is a felony that can result in two to 10 years in prison and up to a $100,000 fine.
- This section also encompasses encouraging, supporting, or convincing a person of legal age into prostitution or working in a brothel. If you encourage somebody else to do it on your behalf is also a criminal offense in Virginia.
- In Virginia, prostitution statutes forbid the proposal of, an agreement to, or participation in any sexual act in exchange for payment or compensation
- You could face criminal charges if you are one of the following:
- Prostitute (supplier of service)
- Pimp/Madame (liaison involved in the transaction)
- Customer/John (solicitor of service also known as solicitation)
- Anyone involved in facilitating human trafficking
- Section 18.2-356 deals with procurement. Procurement means receiving money or anything of value in exchange for helping a person commit an illegal sexual act.
Why you need a Sex Trafficking Attorney?
- If you are accused of Virginia sex trafficking crimes, you need to know that these are serious crimes in the state of Virginia and attract strict penalties.
- Talk to an Virginia sex trafficking attorney right away if you are charged with this offense to know what your defenses would be.
- The Virginia sex trafficking lawyer will be able to protect your rights right through the investigation and defend you aggressively. C