Under Texas law, if it is alleged that you have offered to give, or receive money for sexual services, you can be charged with the criminal offense of prostitution. Texas law is very strict in this regard, inasmuch as merely offering to pay for sex is sufficient to support a charge of prostitution. The statute does not require that sex occurs, or even that any money change hands. Simply stating, “would you like to have sex for money” to someone is enough to land you in jail (even if you don’t have any money).
If it’s your first offense, you will be charged with a class “B” misdemeanor, which carries a penalty range of up to 180 days in jail and a $2000 fine. If you’ve been previously convicted once or twice before, the offense is enhanced to a class “A” misdemeanor, and the range of punishment is up to a year in jail and up to a $4000 fine. And if you have three or more convictions, you’ll be facing a state jail felony. State jail felony offenses can land you in jail for up to two years, and get you a fine of up to $10,000.
Texas Penal Code Section 43.02. PROSTITUTION
The criminal offense of prostitution is governed by the following statute: Texas Penal Code Section 43.02. PROSTITUTION. (a) A person commits an offense if he knowingly: (1) offers to engage, agrees to engage, or engages in sexual conduct for a fee; or (2) solicits another in a public place to engage with him in sexual conduct for hire. (b) An offense is established under Subsection (a)(1) whether the actor is to receive or pay a fee. An offense is established under Subsection (a)(2) whether the actor solicits a person to hire him or offers to hire the person solicited.
(c) An offense under this section is a Class B misdemeanor unless the actor has previously been convicted one or two times of an offense under this section, in which event it is a Class A misdemeanor. If the actor has previously been convicted three or more times of an offense under this section, the offense is a state jail felony.
(d) It is a defense to prosecution under this section that the actor engaged in the conduct that constitutes the offense because the actor was the victim of conduct that constitutes an offense under Section 20A.02. Acts 1973, 63rd Leg., p. 883, ch. 399, Sec. 1, eff. Jan. 1, 1974. Amended by Acts 1977, 65th Leg., p. 757, ch. 286, Sec. 1, eff. May 27, 1977; Acts 1993, 73rd Leg., ch. 900, Sec. 1.01, eff. Sept. 1, 1994; Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 987, Sec. 1, eff. Sept. 1, 2001. Amended by: Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 1002, Sec. 8, eff. September 1, 2009.
Dallas Prostitution Attorney
Having you been arrested for prostitution? Call and speak to an experienced Dallas prostitution attorney at Berlof & Newton, P.C. today!
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