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Florida Lawmakers Cracking Down on Prostitution and Revenge Porn

Florida residents now have 27 new laws in effect to regulate a wide variety of violations, including prostitution and the relatively new offense of revenge porn. Lawmakers passed these statutes in May of 2015, but they are just now taking effect.

Prostitution

Under the new Florida law, the classification for solicitation of a prostitute increases. Where a first conviction used to carry a first-degree misdemeanor classification, it is now a second-degree misdemeanor. Second offense are now classified as third-degree felonies and third offenses are now classified as second-degree felonies. The potential punishments for the convictions are as follows:

  • First conviction – Mandatory 100 hours of community service and a course on the dangers of prostitution;
  • Second conviction – Up to five years imprisonment with a mandatory minimum of 10 days; and
  • Third conviction – Up to 15 years imprisonment with a mandatory minimum of at least 10 days.

Additionally, any vehicle used in the solicitation of a prostitute is subject to up to 60 days in a police impoundment lot.

Every year, more than 80,000 people are arrested on prostitution charges in the United States. As reported by Sun Coast News, police and lawmakers hope that the law will deter potential offenders and decrease the prostitution on local streets. The St. Petersburg police department expressed that its officers will begin enforcing the new laws immediately.

These punishment increases make a viable defense even more important. Your attorney can use a variety of defenses to advocate for your good name, as well as your freedom. Entrapment is a common defense used in solicitation. It is premised on the assertion that law enforcement lured you into committing the offense. Your attorney may also assert that there is insufficient evidence to support a conviction.

Revenge Porn

Revenge porn is a relatively new offense that was born out of the internet age. It refers to situations where an individual posts sexually explicit pictures of another with the intent to retaliate or seek revenge against that person. Florida lawmakers recently considered a bill to ban this behavior and punish it with criminal penalties. At the center of the support efforts was a Florida State University student who was a victim of revenge porn in 2014.

She is quoted on News 4 Jacksonville as stating, “It’s something that’s very near and dear to my heart and I was a victim of it, and with it not being illegal at the time, when it happened to me, it was just my gut feeling to do something about it.”

The new law makes the first offense of revenge a first-degree misdemeanor, with a possible punishment of up to a year incarceration. A second violation is a three-degree felony, punishable by up to five years in jail.

Don’t allow your name and reputation to be unjustly tarnished. If you or a loved one is facing solicitation or revenge porn charges, it is important to quickly contact a skilled attorney in Miami. Call Ratzan & Faccidomo, LLC today at (305) 330-3905 for a confidential and free consultation.

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