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Jackson & Pearland Lawyer > Blog > Criminal Defense > The Crime Of Prostitution In Pearland – Defining Prostitution Under The Texas Penal Code

The Crime Of Prostitution In Pearland – Defining Prostitution Under The Texas Penal Code

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If you look up the word “prostitution” in the Oxford dictionary, you will find that it is defined as “the practice or occupation of engaging in sexual activity with someone for payment”. Similar terms that online dictionaries suggests are “sex work”, “the game”, “the trade”, and even “the oldest profession in the world.” Based on our own experiences, as well as movies, books, and television shows, we probably all have a sense of what prostitution is and our own definition for it. However, it is unlikely that we are using the legal definition that specifies the elements of the crime of prostitution. Whether prostitution is the “oldest profession in the world” or not, it is an activity that is illegal in Pearland, and a person can be criminally charged with the crime of prostitution and may face fines and jail time, depending on the number of offenses and the severity of the offense. Because the dictionary and layman’s definition and the criminal legal definition of “prostitution” are not the same, it is important to know the criminal legal definition when facing prostitution charges.

The Criminal Legal Definition of “Prostitution” Under the Texas Penal Code

The Texas Penal Code establishes the criminal laws that are applicable to Pearland and Texas, generally. Title 9 (Offenses Against Public Order and Decency), Chapter 43 (Public Indecency), Subchapter A establishes the criminal laws relating to the crime of prostitution. Under the Code, a person commits the crime of prostitution “…if the person knowingly offers or agrees to receive a fee from another to engage in sexual conduct.” Importantly, a “fee” under the Code means “…the payment or offer of payment in the form of money, goods, services, or other benefit” and “sexual conduct” means “…deviate sexual intercourse, sexual contact, and sexual intercourse.” “Deviate sexual intercourse” under the act refers to “…any contact between the genitals of one person and the mouth or anus of another person”, and “sexual contact” refers to “…any touching of the anus, breasts, or any part of the genitals of another person with intent to arouse or gratify the sexual desire of any person.” In sum, in Pearland, a person can be criminally charged with prostitution not only for soliciting payment for performing actual sexual intercourse, but can also be charged for performing other types of sexual acts. In addition, under Texas criminal laws, a person can be charged with the crime of prostitution even if they did not receive actual money, such as cash, for performing sexual acts, but even if they received some other type of non-cash benefit, such as property or favors.

Help Defending a Prostitution Charge in Pearland

If a person is charged with prostitution, they may feel hesitant to reach out for help for any number of reasons. However, a person charged with prostitution should immediately reach out to an experienced Pearland criminal defense lawyer to learn about their rights and options in the criminal case against them. If you have been charged with the crime of prostitution in Pearland, contact Keith B. French Law for a confidential consultation with an experienced Pearland criminal defense lawyer. Contact Keith B. French Law today to discuss your case and your side of the story, and to see if Keith B. French Law can help defend you.

Source:

statutes.capitol.texas.gov/Docs/PE/htm/PE.43.htm#:~:text=Sec.-,43.02.,to%20engage%20in%20sexual%20conduct

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