It has been called the “world oldest profession” – prostitution. Whether that is true or not, prostitution has exhibited longevity, if nothing else. This creates one abiding rule: the more people the world inhabits, the more prostitutes there will be to service the demand for them.
The problem, however, is that prostitution is illegal in the United States unless except in 11 counties in Nevada where brothels are legal business establishments.
Engaging in prostitution as a prostitute, as someone who solicits a prostitution, or as someone who promotes prostitution can result in criminal prosecution.
Law enforcement authorities on both sides of the country have recently busted two major prostitution rings and the alleged perpetrators are now facing federal charges.
Five individuals were arrested in Massachusetts for their involvement in a prostitution ring that supposedly brought in more than $100,000 per week.
Prosecutors claim that Asian women were brought to Massachusetts from Flushing, New York, where they offered sexual services in apartments that served as brothels. Two to three women worked in each apartment and customers were charged $100 for appointments lasting 15 minutes.
The five defendants gave the women some of the profits, but took the majority of money for themselves.
On the other side of the country, six different individuals were arrested for their involvement in a prostitution ring with more than 30 locations in Western Washington.
The organized prostitution ring made “hundreds of thousands of dollars through the prostitution of Asian sex workers.”
The defendants supposedly transported sex workers to different locations, rented apartments and hotels for prostitution services, and collected money. The organizer of the ring also spent $100,000 to increase traffic to her ads on Backpage.com and other websites.
These two prostitution busts raise the question regarding prostitution here in the United States – the federal laws and consequences of this criminal activity? Let’s answer that question now.
Federal Prostitution Laws
Here are the major federal prostitution laws you should be aware of:
Any alien who comes to the United States solely to engage in prostitution or engages in prostitution within 10 years of applying for entry to the United States will be denied admission.
The importation of an alien for the purpose of prostitution is prohibited and can be punished by up to 10 years in prison.
Prostitution within a reasonable distance of military and naval establishments is illegal and can be punished by up to one year in prison.
Interstate and foreign travel or transportation to aid in unlawful acts – such as prostitution – is illegal and can be punished by up to five years in prison.
If you knowingly transport a person to engage in prostitution, you can spend up to 10 years in prison.
It is illegal to knowingly coerce or entice a person to engage in prostitution and you could be imprisoned for up to 20 years if convicted.
It should be noted that even if federal charges are not brought, you can face possible state charges as a prostitute, prostitution customer, pimp, or brothel owner for breaking prostitution laws.
Despite prostitution continuing to endure as a profession, it is still illegal in our country – unless, as mentioned before, you’re in certain areas of Nevada – and the penalties for being involved in prostitution can affect the rest of your life. If you’ve been charged with a federal prostitution crime, reach out to an experienced federal criminal attorney who will help you fight for your rights.