Law enforcement takes an aggressive approach to prosecute parties on both sides of prostitution transactions, and both buyers and sellers of sex can find themselves in jail.
At Petersen Criminal Defense Law, our prostitution lawyer has more than 25 years of hands-on experience defending clients facing all types of felony and misdemeanor charges, including both prostitution and solicitation.
We are familiar with all the best defenses to prostitution crimes and are prepared to aggressively defend your rights at every stage of the process.
What Counts As Prostitution?
Every state’s laws differ slightly regarding the definition of prostitution. But broadly speaking, prostitution refers to an agreement to perform any kind of sex act for money.
In most states, the term “solicitation of prostitution” is used to describe someone who is seeking to pay for sex, while “prostitution” refers to the act of offering sexual services for sale.
Importantly, you don’t actually need to engage in any sex act to commit the offense of prostitution or solicitation. The way the law is written, as soon as you ask another person to perform a sex act in exchange for money or anything else of value, including drugs, you commit the offense.
Is Prostitution Legal in Nebraska?
No, both prostitution and the solicitation of prostitution are crimes in Nebraska. However, the two offenses carry different penalties, with solicitation being more serious.
A first or second-time prostitution conviction is a Class II misdemeanor, carrying a penalty of up to six months in jail and a fine of up to $1,000. A third or subsequent prostitution conviction becomes a Class I misdemeanor, which carries a maximum punishment of up to a year in jail and a $1,000 fine.
Solicitation of Prostitution Penalties
For those without a prior conviction, a first-time solicitation of prostitution conviction is a Class I misdemeanor, punishable by a year in jail and a fine of up to $1,000.
However, anyone who has one or more prior convictions faces a Class VI felony and must pay a fine of at least $500. The maximum penalty for a repeat solicitation offense is up to two years in jail, followed by 12 months of probation and a fine of up to $10,000.
In addition to the possibility of jail time and a significant fine, anyone placed on probation for either a prostitution or solicitation offense must attend and complete a mental health and substance abuse assessment.
Those convicted of a solicitation offense must also complete a class on the individual and societal harms of prostitution.
What Is Human Trafficking?
While most prostitution offenses involve only an agreement to buy or sell sex, prosecutors are always looking out for signs of human trafficking.
Human trafficking is an extremely serious crime that involves transporting another person across state lines to become a sex worker.
Human trafficking of a minor is a Class IB felony, punishable by a minimum of 20 years in prison. The maximum sentence is life in prison. Sex trafficking of an adult is a Class II felony, which carries a minimum of one year and a maximum of 50 years in prison.
What Is Pandering?
Pandering is another serious prostitution offense that involves promoting prostitution through any of the following:
- Enticing another person to engage in prostitution;
- Operating a place where prostitution is allowed;
- Encouraging another person to leave the state to engage in prostitution; or
- Receiving the proceeds from a prostitution operation.
There are a number of situations that give rise to pandering charges. However, perhaps the most common involves what is commonly referred to as “pimping.”
Discuss Your Case with an Experienced Nebraska Criminal Defense Attorney Today
If you are facing charges related to prostitution in Nebraska, it is essential that you give the situation the seriousness it deserves.
At Petersen Criminal Defense Law, our prostitution lawyer is dedicated to defending the rights of men and women charged with prostitution offenses.