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California prositution and solicitation laws can be complex and convictions for this offense could have consequences for you license, severe Immigration consequences as well as provide a basis for a moral turpitude violation.

As a Former, Probation Officer, Deputy District Attorney, and Adjunct Criminology Instructor, and a Criminal Defense Attorney for more than 13 years, I can help you through an arrest or a charge for this type of case do not hesitate to call if you have been arrested for this crime because the consequences can be very severe.

If you are in the process of getting your Green Card or in another Immigratio matter you should immediately tell your Attorney about even an arrest for this prostitution or solicitation.

Under Immigration law even a first offense of solicitation or prostitution can be severe, and delay your citzenship application.  Most time you will not be deported for prostitution on a first offense.  This is because Prostitution many times falls in the petty crimes exception even though prostitution is always considered a moral turpitude crime. 

On a second offense deportation is possible.  Please Immediately call an experienced Immigration Attorney if you are arrested for a prostitution offense.


If you work as a massage therapist a prostitution arrest will usually result in the immediate suspension of your license if you work in  a town or city that requires licensing through a state agency. 

If you do what is referred to as pre-plea diversion than your license will be re-instated after you complete your diversion class.

A diversion clas is usually a life skills class or a prostitution abatement class, usually lasting one day depending on the county and city in which you were arrested. 

A Post Plea dversion is very different, the post plea diversion has a very different outcome.  This is true for both licensing and Immigration, for licensing and Immigration a Post Plea diversion is considered a conviction.  Therefore, the temporary revocation of your license will become a two year permanent revcocation.  You can re-apply in two years.

Immigration does not recognize post plea diversions, and will count your plea as a moral turpitude violation having serious consequences for you Immigration status. 

Many times Attorneys will plea a client to Penal Code violation of disturbing the peace with an agreement for jail time just to avoid the serious consequences that a person faces for a conviction. 

If you are found not guilty by Jury or court trial the action against you on both you license and Immigration is stopped and you will not face those consequences. 


Typically there is often a lot of political and social pressure placed on law enforcement regarding prostitution.  Therefore Police will often expend a tremendous amount of resources on this problem.


1. overview of Penal Code section 647 b/ prostitution and solicitation of prostitution

Todays Calfornia Laws allow the police to arrest the

prostitute and

the John or person soliciting the prostitute

And other middlemen known a pimps who live of the proceeds of a prostitute. 

Undercover sting operations are a common way for officers to make a prostitution arrests.  Police monitor massage parlors, strip clubs, and the streets in order to bust prostitutes and or Johns.



In order to prove engagin in an act of prostitution, the prosecutor must prove that you

1. engaged in an act of prostitution

2. that you did so willfully

'prostitution means engaging in sexual intercourse or any lewd act with another person in exchange for money or other consideration.


a "lewd" act is defined as any act that involves touching the genitals, buttocks, or female breast of either person by another person that is done with the specific intent to arouse or sexually gratify. 

"willfully means dilleberitely or on purpose.


In order to convict you of soliciting prostitution, the prosecutor must prove

1. solicited another person to engage in an act of prostitution

2. that you did so with the specific intent of engaging in an act of prostitution

Depending on the nature of the exchange and who initiated the interaction prosecutors could charge the offense against the prostitute or the customer.


"soliciting" means to lure entice or elicit.  however, simply soliciting another person without more is insufficient to uphold a conviction for soicitation of prostitution. 

solicitation calls for specific intent of engaging in an act of prostitution typically evidenced by an offer to pay money or other compensation for sex.  not by a simple hand gesture or way of dress.  This is important because a mere gesture or short skirt is not enough even if in a high prostitution area. 



In order for you to be convicted of engaging in an act of prostitution, the prosecutor must prove

1. that you agreed to an act of prostitution

2. that you did so with the specific intent of engaging in an act of prostitution,


3. that in addition to the agreement, you performed an act in furtherance of prostitution


It is not enough to agree to do an act of prostitution you must do an act in furtherance.

It does not matter what the act is, as long as it clarrifies or corroborates the fact that an act or agreement was reached.  It is important to note that this act can take place before, during, or after the agreement.  When the act takes place is important that the act actually took place. 

Another noteworthy point is that " the act in furtherance" must be clearly stated in the formal written charge against you (otherwise known as the complaint) if it isnt it is a due process violation and could result in the dismissal of the charges against you. 

It should be noted that possession of condoms

large amounts of money

possession of "client book" and or

your attire

may all reveal evidence that you are guilty of one of the above offenses.  However, none of these "evidentiary items " themselves prove the charge by themselves. 

Penalties punishment, and sentencing

read above for some of the consequences.  First, a conviciton of prostitution charge is a Misdamenor punishable by up to six months in jail. In Fresno County first time offenders are usually offered post  plea diversion and a dismissal. 

If you were committed the offesne while using a car, and 2. within 1,000 feet of a residence you could face the towing of your vehicle and revocation for up to 30 days. and a restricted license for up to six months. 


Like the crime of statutory rape, prostitution crimes are discretionary meaning it is up to the court to decide if the offender will have to register as a sex offender.

Usually the Judge will only order this registration if he finds you have a sexual compulsion or as a reapeat offender. 


1. Entrapment many times these decoy officers lure othewise law abiding citzens to commit crimes of solicitation or prostitution

2. lack of credible evidence in many "sting operation" in massage parlors the police will send in a informant to ask the women to perform and act of prositittion many times with no words being said. and only hand signals then when the women supposedly agrees the officers do a bust signal and the women is arrested.

this is entrapment

lack of credible evidence because it is a he said she said with no creidible evidence the women ever agreed to anything.  Many times I have represented women who said the informant was aggressive and made several statements and she said nothing.  the hidden mike also never picks up the women saying a word. unfortunately many times the women are to scared to testify in court and take plea agreements based upon there fear of law enforcement. 

3. lack of evidence

many times the cases are he said she said with noting picked up on the mike


many times the massage parlor workers do not speak english and there may be cultaral or other mistakes leading to the arrest of these often times scared women.


If you have been arrested for a prostitution related offense please do not hesitate to call.



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Gerald Schwab, Jr.


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Law Office of Gerald Schwab, Jr.
Fresno Criminal Defense Attorney
5588 N Palm Ave,
Fresno, CA 93704
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Phone: 559.441.1418