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A very serious crime accompanied by harsh punishments handed down by courts, pandering is closely linked to pimping. As a result, laws pertaining to these crimes are designed to stop and punish intermediaries who transport prostitutes to various locations, recruit prostitutes, advertise sex services, and solicit money from prostitutes. In states across the nation, prosecutors do everything possible to make sure these laws are strictly enforced and that convictions are gained in most cases. However, it is important to remember that pandering laws focus only on the intermediaries within the sex industry, not the prostitutes or their clients.
Benefit, Exploit, and Promote
When examining pandering laws, they are written so that they inflict legal punishments on those who benefit from, exploit, and promote prostitution. Whether advertising and promoting the services of sex workers, giving prostitutes locations from which to work, or using various techniques to actively recruit new people into prostitution, these laws are very specific and written especially to discourage people from becoming involved in the sex industry.
What About Nevada?
Though prostitution is illegal in virtually all states, it is legal in Nevada. However, that does not mean pandering laws do not exist in the state. In fact, they not only exist, but are considered some of the strictest in the nation. Since Nevada’s sex industry is heavily regulated, prostitutes working in brothels are subject to registration, regular medical exams, and periodic testing for sexually-transmitted diseases and other health issues.
Crimes and Charges
Since pandering and pimping are the same in many ways, the laws related to them are usually incorporated together. However, some states still consider them to be separate charges, and thus prosecute the cases somewhat differently. Yet for a defendant to be convicted of pandering, various elements must apply to the case and be proven by prosecutors. The two elements are procuring individuals, men or women, with the intent to prostitute them, and the intent to promote, encourage, or facilitate prostitution. When procuring, this refers to a person threatening someone into becoming a prostitute or securing them a location in which they can prostitute. As for intent, this usually involves owning a business where the defendant is aware prostitution takes place.
While prostitution and solicitation are misdemeanors that carry with them very light penalties, this does not hold true for pandering. In fact, the punishments are very severe. For example, since it is a felony, a pandering conviction can carry with it a prison term of over 12 years and fines easily exceeding $10,000 or more. In cases where the prostitute was a minor, the court will usually impose even harsher penalties. In fact, even in Nevada, pandering is a felony. As an added penalty for being convicted of this crime, defendants in most states are required to register as sex offenders, and may have to remain registered for 25 years or even the rest of their lives.
Mitigating and Aggravating Circumstances
When a court is attempting to determine a sentence for a defendant convicted of pandering, it will take into account various mitigating and aggravating circumstances. In many cases, an aggravating circumstance will be when the prostitute involved is a minor. When this happens, a defendant can expect to receive a much harsher sentence. Also, if violence is involved in the case, the defendant will also face harsher penalties. When discussing mitigating circumstances, these may include simple mistakes, intoxication, coercion, or even insanity. Because of the wide range of both types of circumstances, defense lawyers will go all-out to uncover evidence that can help their clients overcome these charges and avoid convictions.
Statute of Limitations
Due to pandering being a felony, most states have a minimum statute of limitations of three years in these cases. However, different states tend to have varying amounts of time regarding a pandering statute of limitations, so this should be closely examined by defendants and attorneys. If minors are involved in these cases, the statute of limitations may be extended by a state. Also, should a defendant be out of the state or even the country, the statute of limitations can be tolled. Yet whatever the circumstances, a defendant will likely have to eventually answer the charges.