Defending Prostitution Charges

by Prostitution Attorney Thomas C. Gallagher 

Should sex between consenting adults be a crime?

Though not in all states and nations, in Minnesota prostitution law makes a crime of consensual sex for money.  In Minnesota, prosecutors charge more customers with prostitution charges than prostitutes.  Solicitation of Prostitution is often the charge.

How to get arrested for Prostitution

Amsterdam Red Light District
Amsterdam Red Light District

Backpage prostitutes, and those on similar escort web sites like Eros, predominate these days.  Little prostitution happens on the street anymore.  Police are aware of this, and routinely set up sting operations, with their own backpage and other online ads.

When the would-be client calls, a police officer lures them along, eventually to the destination — often a hotel room or apartment.  Once inside, she (or he) soon confirms the arrangement of some sexual act for a price.  She leaves the room “for a moment.”  Police officers jump out for the arrest and what follows.

Usually these events in the room are video and audio recorded.  Police invite the client to admit or offer excuses.  Though it’s a mistake to do either, most do.  The police officers release most after identification procedures, with a court Summons.  Police are then ready for the next one.

Now is the time to retain an experienced prostitution defense attorney.

Is prostitution a misdemeanor?

Usually.  But it can be charged as a gross misdemeanor as well, often with a weak claims of the element “public place.”  It can also be charged as felony prostitution, based upon a claim of a patron’s agreement to hire a prostitute under age 18 years old.  Minnesota’s criminal statutes relating to prostitution crimes are in Sections 609.321 – 609.326.


Minnesota Statutes Section 609.325 “Defenses” seems an effort to legislate away defenses, though it does create a defense for some prostitutes.  We can raise defenses to these charges, however.

Law enforcement’s work is nearly done, once they set up their prostitution sting room and webpage. They can then move patrons through as if an assembly line, one after the other.  Police hustle one out the back door to make room for the one coming in the front.

Over time, they cut corners to save time and end up charging people on weak evidence — people who are not-guilty.   An experienced prostitution defense lawyer can spot these cases and win.

Sex Workers

sex workers mnThough less often charged (compared to customers), sex workers are sometimes charged with prostitution.  When they are, it’s not uncommon for the case to be weak, and not the result of a planned sting.

When comes to suspected sex workers, we’ve seen a pattern of harassment.   Police seem to want to drive sex workers away to another jurisdiction.  This can take the form of weak evidence and false charges.  An experienced defense attorney like Gallagher can spot these cases and help his client prevail.

People are often falsely charged with prostitution, though not-guilty.  This may be in part due to a lack of understanding by police or prosecutors.

Examples of harassment of sex workers

For example, most sex workers want to have some security — someone to be aware of their whereabouts and personal safety.  That person may not be aware of what the sex worker is doing.  But we’ve had cases where the friend waiting alone in the parking lot in their car for their friend to return after an errand, has been falsely charged with prostitution.

Another example was a client who was an exotic dancer, or stripper, in a bar where police were present undercover in an effort to find violations by the unwelcome bar owner.  Police observed a bar customer grab our dancer-client’s breast — a violation of norms in strip bars.  (No touching the dancers.)  Unaware of undercover police presence, our dancer-client yelled at him, kicked at him, stormed off the stage, yelled at the bar owner tending bar for not doing more about it.  She then retreated to her dressing room, shutting the door.  She was an assault victim.  But later, they charged her with prostitution.  (After our defense work, the charges dismissed in the end.)

Law enforcement focuses their stings on customers, not prostitutes, however.

Breaking Free
Breaking Free is a local non-profit that helps people engaged in prostitution get out of it.

What is at stake

Most cases involve misdemeanor prostitution charges.  Some, however,involves gross misdemeanor and felony charges.  Regardless of the level charged, a first-time defendant will want to keep their criminal record clean of any convictions.  It’s important.  It’s worth retaining a good prostitution attorney to help make that happen.

Part of protecting a person’s record is the embarrassment factor.  People don’t want their good name smeared with any criminal conviction, much less for prostitution.

With more serious felony prostitution charges or where the accused has prior convictions, jail or prison time becomes a real concern.

Thomas Gallagher, Prostitution Attorney in Minneapolis
Thomas Gallagher, Prostitution Attorney in Minneapolis

Question?  Call Minneapolis Prostitution Defense Attorney Thomas C. Gallagher at 612 333-1500

For these cases, clients will want a good prostitution attorney to avoid or reduce any potential incarceration.

When a person becomes aware of being a target of a police investigation, they may wish to retain the best prostitution attorney for pre-charge counsel and defense.

Why Gallagher Defense, Prostitution Attorney

Thomas Gallagher is a Minneapolis Prostitution Attorney with over 30 years experience defending clients successfully.  Perhaps Gallagher has not seen it all yet, but close.  You can put his experience to work for you.  Gallagher has the best-ratings for lawyers available.  He is a five-star reviewed Minneapolis Prostitution Attorney.

You can call Thomas Gallagher for a free consultation at 612 333-1500