Prostitution Sting Operations
In Nevada, undercover vice squads often run sting operations looking to find people to cite or arrest for solicitation of prostitution and other prostitution related offenses. Contrary to what many tourists think, prostitution is only legal in certain locations in Nevada, and is not legal anywhere in Las Vegas or Clark County.
You do not actually have to exchange money to be arrested, but merely agree to do so. While entrapment is available as a defense, it is much more difficult to succeed with this defense than most people think. Just because you did not know the person was a cop, or the cop tricked you, does not mean that the conduct of the undercover police officer meets the legal definition of entrapment.
Las Vegas Lawyer for Prostitution Sting Operations
If you have been charged with prostitution, solicitation, or any other related offense, it is vital that you immediately seek experienced legal counsel. Michael Pariente is a highly qualified defense attorney in Las Vegas who will fight to protect your reputation and freedom after you have been arrested.
Pariente Law Firm, P.C. provides solid legal representation to individuals facing charges related to prostitution in Las Vegas, Clark County, Henderson, Paradise, Boulder City, and the surrounding areas. Contact Michael Pariente today at (702) 966-5310 and let him fight for you.
Sting Operations in Nevada
While prostitution is legal in some parts of Nevada, it is still illegal in Las Vegas and the rest of Clark County. Law enforcement often conducts sting operations in an attempt to find people to cite or arrest for either prostitution or solicitation. Police are also looking to make arrests for drug possession and outstanding warrants during these operations.
One version of the sting operation usually targets visitors to Las Vegas, and attempts to get them to make statements that can be construed as soliciting a prostitute. The tourists are then cited or arrested and charged. Many of the people targeted may be under a mistaken impression that prostitution is legal in all of Nevada, or have their judgment clouded by alcohol.
Another version of the sting operation involves undercover law enforcement offering large amounts of money to entertainers to perform sex acts. Often law enforcement targets people who do not normally perform sex acts for money, but offers the person such a large sum of money that it is difficult to resist.
Undercover police often target these places and services for sting operations, posing as both customers and employees:
- Escort services;
- Strip clubs and gentleman’s clubs;
- Massage parlors;
- Bars; and
If convicted of solicitation under NRS 201.354 , you face:
- Six months in jail; and
- $1,000 fine.
Jail time and fines also can result from other prostitution related charges such as pandering. Repeat offenses and other criteria can result in longer jail times.
Defenses When You Are Caught in a Sting Operation
Some defenses may be available to you if you are accused of prostitution or soliciting a prostitute.
Entrapment is a defense that may be used, but it is much harder to successfully use this defense than is commonly thought. Simply pointing out that law enforcement baited you into making the offer and that you did not know the person was a cop will not work.
Entrapment can only be successful if you can show that police induced you to commit an offense that you were not otherwise predisposed to commit. However, it very is difficult to prove this, since prosecutors will just point to the fact that you committed the offense as evidence that you were predisposed to commit the offense.
However, if you have evidence that it was the undercover police officer, and not yourself, who repeatedly suggested sexual activity for pay, and/or that you resisted their attempts to get you to say the words that resulted in your arrest, it is possible that an entrapment defense can be successful. Your defense will also be helped if you can show that the undercover police officer made threatening statements or otherwise engaged in behavior they are not permitted to do.
Law enforcement may also lack proper recordings of the statements you allegedly made. In this case, it will be difficult for the prosecution to prove that you actually said what the police claim you said. Without recordings, the prosecution will have to rely on witness statements, which can be shown to be unreliable, and circumstantial evidence such as large amounts of cash or condoms.
Your statements may also have been too ambiguous for the prosecution to prove that you violated the law. If there was no clear statement of agreement to trade money or other items of value for sex acts, your statements should not result in a conviction.
You may also qualify for a diversion program such as the First Offender Prostitution Program in order to avoid a conviction.
Finding the Best Prostitution Crimes Attorney in Clark County, Nevada
If you are facing charges for prostitution or a prostitution-related offense in Clark County, Henderson, Las Vegas, Paradise, or the surrounding areas, contact Pariente Law Firm, P.C. today. Michael Pariente is a former prosecutor who now works exclusively as a criminal defense attorney.
Pariente Law Firm, P.C. is devoted to providing clients with the most complete defense strategies possible. Contact us today at (702) 966-5310 so that we can get started on your case.