Pandering laws often go hand in hand with pimping laws. They are designed to stop the sex industry by criminalizing the intermediaries, which are those who transport prostitutes between different locations, solicit money from prostitutes, recruit prostitutes into the sex industry, and advertise sex services. Pandering is a serious offense with the potential for significant punishments.
Pandering laws do not criminalize prostitutes, nor their clients. Rather, they target those who benefit from this trade, who exploit it, and who promote it. They are found guilty of facilitation the sex trade in any way. This includes providing locations for prostitutes to work, advertising and promoting sex workers’ services, and recruiting people into the industry.
Even in the state of Nevada, where prostitution is legal, pandering laws are in place. This is because the state wants to discourage people from being involved in the procurement and promotion of the sex industry. While prostitution is legal in certain parts of Nevada, the industry is heavily regulated, including regular testing and medical examinations of prostitutes, and registration.
Pandering Crimes & Charges
Pimping and pandering are usually incorporated into a single cause. In other states, however, they are two separate charges. However, they are always related. A number of elements have to be proven in order for someone to be convicted. These elements are:
- Procuring people with the intent of prostituting them. This can happen in a range of different ways, with each state having their own regulations. Commonly, this includes threatening someone into the sex workers’ industry, securing someone a space in a brothel, enticing someone to be a sex worker, and more.
- The intent of encouraging, promoting, or in any other way facilitating prostitution. People will not be charged under pandering laws if they own a business where, unbeknownst to them, people prostitutes themselves. Ignorance or mistakes are not charged as pandering. If, however, you were aware of prostitution taking place, then you can be charged.
The penalties for pandering are very severe, particularly when compared to solicitation or prostitution. The latter two are classed as misdemeanors and usually carry very little punishment. Pandering, however, is generally seen as a felony. This means that perpetrators could face more than 12 years in prison and/or hefty fines reaching into the tens of thousands of dollars. Penalties are even more severe if the prostitute was a minor. Even Nevada considers pandering a felony, in fact. Every state has punishments in place for those who try to get people into the sex industry. The choice of entering this industry, and remaining in it, should always be that of the prostitute alone.
An example is found in the state of California. A first pandering offense will lead to three, four, or six years in prison per count. Additionally, a fine of up to $10,000 will be imposed. If the prostitute was a minor, then the penalty becomes three, six, or eight years, as well as the fine. Other states will impose prison sentences of up to 30 years, particularly if a minor is involved.
It is common for those convicted of pandering to be required to sign the sex offenders register.
Pandering Sentencing Guidelines
Judges will look at mitigating and aggravating circumstances in order to pass sentence on an offender. The biggest aggravating circumstance is the prostitute being a minor. Other things, such as the presence of violence or enticement, will also increase sentences. Mitigating circumstances include mistake of act, intoxication, coercion, insanity, and so on.
Pandering Statute of Limitations
Different states have different statutes of limitations for pandering. As it is classed as a felony, most states do have a statute of limitations of at least three years. Additionally, this statute can be tolled if the defendant was out of state or out of the country. If a minor was involved, the statute of limitations is generally longer.
- 27 year old John Miller has been sentenced to 60 days in jail, as well as to five years’ probation for pandering sexually oriented material in which a minor was depicted. He will also have to sign the sex offenders’ register for the next 25 years, and he is banned from using computers. His case has been used as an example, as the judge feels that all offenses involving a minor should result in a prison sentence. (WFMJ)
- Noah James Stacy, a lawyer from Norwood, has been charged with five counts of pandering sexually oriented materials in which a minor was involved. He has pleaded guilty to child pornography charges. While no judgement has been made yet, it is likely that Stacy will lose his license to practice law at the very least. Furthermore, he now has to sign the sex offenders’ register for the next 25 years. (Cincinnati.com)
- Jamar Geeter has recently been sentenced to 97 years in prison for 16 counts of pandering, pimping, sex trafficking, and rape. His sentence serves as an example and a deterrent to other sex traffickers. Geeter will not be eligible for parole until he is 89. (San Francisco Chronicle)
- A woman in Ohio has been arrested after she filmed herself raping a minor. She then proceeded to share the video. This resulted in Renee Deene being charged with pandering sexual materials that involved a minor and with rape. Unfortunately, this was the second case of its kind to come out in Ohio in short succession, with a similar event happening to a 17 year old girl. (RT.com)
- Rufus McNeely was convicted of luring a 16 year old girl into the sex industry in Los Angeles and two other Californian counties. McNeely appealed his conviction, but it has now been upheld. He has also been charged with pimping another woman, who was not a minor. (My News LA.com)
Pandering Quick Links & References
Pandering Laws by State
Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, Wyoming