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People commonly associate the crime of prostitution as a person offering a sex act in exchange for money. While this certainly qualifies, Alabama has expanded their definition of prostitution to include not just the seller of sex, but also the buyer, handler, and customer.

People who are arrested and charged with prostitution are often surprised to find that their arraignment paperwork does in fact list prostitution as their offense.

Regardless of whether people have been charged with prostitution in the classic sense, or under one of Alabama’s expansive definitions, A Homewood prostitution lawyer can help. A qualified criminal defense attorney can fight to protect individuals’ reputations and freedoms in court.

Prostitution Laws in Alabama

Alabama’s statutes concerning prostitution are contained in Chapter 13A-12. The subsections define not only what prostitution is, but also how it is punished.

The classic definition of prostitution is provided in AL Code 13A-12-120. It says that prostitution is the performance of any natural or unnatural sexual act, or sexual contact, for money or anything of value.

It is worth noting here that sexual intercourse is not required, only some sort of sexual contact. Additionally, an exchange of money is not required. A bargain of sex for any tangible object, electronics, clothing, or even food, qualifies as prostitution.

The alternate definitions are stated in AL Code 13A-12-121. This expands prostitution beyond the classic definition to include:

  • Forcing, hiring, or convincing any person into a sex act for money
  • Simply agreeing to an arrangement to exchange sex for something of value. This mere attempt to participate in a prostitution exchange is enough to warrant a conviction if the prosecutor can prove it.
  • Operating a prostitution enterprise
  • Soliciting patrons for prostitution

Under these other definitions, people who serve as handlers for prostitutes, hire prostitutes, or force people into prostitution will be charged under the umbrella of prostitution.

The concept can be somewhat confusing but, in short, if a person has any role in facilitating an exchange of sex for anything of value, they may be charged with prostitution. In that instance, an individual should get in touch with a Homewood prostitution lawyer who can defend them against these charges.

Potential Penalties

The penalties for a conviction of prostitution are listed under AL Code 13A-12-122. Each violation is counted as a Class A Misdemeanor. According to AL Code 13A-5-7, a conviction for a Class A Misdemeanor can result in up to one year in jail.

AL Code 13A-5-12 allows fines of up to $6,000 to be imposed in addition to any jail time. Regardless of the penalty, simply being charged will place a mark on a person’s criminal record and a conviction cannot be removed.

Contact a Homewood Prostitution Attorney Today

Being charged with prostitution as either a participant, a customer, or a handler can be a confusing experience. Alabama can charge anyone associated with or seeking out sex acts in exchange for anything of value with prostitution, regardless of whether the sex actually happened.

By analyzing the District Attorney’s case and talking with witnesses, a Homewood prostitution lawyer will prepare a detailed and knowledgeable defense. Every stage of a journey through Alabama’s criminal justice system is important. The lawyer will work towards protecting your rights through every step of that journey. A conviction for prostitution can result in up to one year in jail with heavy fines and a mark on your criminal record. Protect your liberty by contacting a Homewood prostitution attorney today.