Virginia Criminal Defense Attorney
Solicitation is a serious crime that can carry severe penalties if someone is convicted of this offense. You should speak with a Falls Church solicitation lawyer if you have been charged with this criminal act. An experienced criminal attorney could answer your legal questions and discuss what course of action may be best given the facts of your case. A well-practiced lawyer could help protect your legal rights and raise a strong defense to counter the prosecution’s case against you.
Code of Virginia § 18.2-346 outlines solicitation as it pertains to prostitution. While solicitation occurs when someone asks, instructs, or persuades someone to commit any type of criminal activity, solicitation of prostitution is one of the most common solicitation charges.
A person could be charged for soliciting prostitution if they propose or provide payment to someone else in exchange for receiving sexual services. However, the law does not require the parties to have actually engaged in intercourse or another sexual act for a person to be charged with solicitation. A knowledgeable attorney could help someone accused of solicitation better understand the local laws governing their particular charges.
The legal consequences associated with a solicitation conviction are dependent upon the underlying criminal act as well as the age of the person solicited. Crimes involving the solicitation of minors are subject to considerably stricter penalties than many other solicitation crimes. When someone solicits a minor for sex-related purposes, they could face Class 5 or 6 felony punishments.
If a person is convicted of a Class 5 felony for soliciting a minor, either online or in person, they would be subject to a minimum period of confinement of one year and/or be required to pay fines as high as $2,500. For a Class 6 felony conviction, the jail time imposed could be anywhere from one to five years and the individual could also be ordered to pay a $2,500 fine.
Solicitation of an individual who has reached the legal age of majority (18) for prostitution would be charged as a Class 1 misdemeanor. Class 1 misdemeanors would be punished by up to $2,500 in fines and no more than one year’s imprisonment.
Upon reviewing the accused individual’s case, a Falls Church solicitation attorney would recommend certain lines of defense to mitigate or eradicate the prosecution’s charges. The burden of proof is on the prosecution to prove the individual’s charges beyond a reasonable doubt.
There are a variety of defenses by which a skilled attorney may be able to provide reasonable doubt that the accused party engaged in or purposed to commit the crime of solicitation. For example, if it can be shown that person accused did not display actual intent to carry out a crime, or withdrew from the alleged crime, reasonable doubt may be shown.
Of course, one potential defense is that the accused party did not participate in any criminal activities at all. A seasoned attorney could discuss with the accused individual about the most effective defense strategies that could be used in their case.
When you are up against criminal charges, you need a seasoned Falls Church solicitation lawyer by your side from the very beginning. A local attorney could identify any gaps in the prosecution’s case and fight hard to create reasonable doubt. Call now to set up a confidential review of your case.