It is a common misconception that prostitution is legal in Las Vegas. Prostitution is only legal in “licensed houses of prostitution” or “brothels.” These brothels are primarily located in rural Nevada counties and do not exist in Las Vegas or other highly populated areas of Nevada.
“Prostitution” involves the exchange of sexual conduct for a fee. Penetration is not necessary and money does not have to be exchanged. “Solicitation,” sometimes referred to as “attempted prostitution,” involves offering or agreeing to exchange sexual acts for a fee.
The crimes of prostitution and solicitation constitute misdemeanors. If convicted of solicitation or prostitution, you could face up to a $1,000 fine and up to six months in jail. Some common penalties for prostitution convictions include fines, AIDS counseling classes and stay out of trouble sentences. It is also not uncommon for the Court to order the offender to stay out of certain tourist areas. Although both the prostitute and their customer can be convicted of prostitution, the classes they are ordered to take can be different. The prostitutes are usually ordered to attend an AIDS awareness class while the customers (commonly referred to as “Johns”) are ordered to complete a prostitution education class or “John School.”
It is important that you hire a Las Vegas criminal defense attorney that will thoroughly review the evidence against you. Some possible defenses to prostitution and solicitation charges are entrapment (sting operations are generally legal), mistake and/or that you lacked the requisite criminal intent. The evidence in prostitution and solicitation cases is typically circumstantial which can also present you with a strong defense.