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Charged With Solicitation - What Do I Do?

person charged with solicitation and in handcuffs

Charged with Solicitation?

In Florida, solicitation is a misdemeanor for first-time wrongdoers. If offenders are convicted of solicitation, it can result in fines, probation, or even jail time. This will vary in a case-by-case scenario. Additionally, if this is the second or third solicitation offense, penalties are more severe.

How is Solicitation Defined?

A variety of acts can be defined as solicitation, but the general definition of criminal solicitation is when one person strongly encourages another person to engage in a criminal act. Criminal solicitation commonly involves crimes such as prostitution and drug dealing. Politicians are on occasion convicted for solicitation of a bribe. The crime of solicitation is completed if one person intentionally entices, advises, incites, orders, or otherwise encourages another to commit a crime. The crime solicited does not need to actually be committed for solicitation to occur.

In the case of prostitution, both the prostitute and the “client” can be charged with solicitation if each person encouraged the other to engage in the criminal act regardless of whether any sex act occurred.  Solicitation is the act of asking someone to engage in a criminal act, not the act itself. Additional charges may also be brought to either party, depending on the particular circumstances or whether any sexual act occurred.

Florida law defines criminal solicitation of prostitution as: (2) Soliciting for Prostitution, Lewdness, or Assignation- Under Section 796.07(f), it is a criminal act for a person to “solicit, induce, entice, or procure another to commit prostitution, lewdness, or assignation.” Under the statute, the term “solicit” means to ask earnestly or to try to induce a person who is solicited to do the solicited thing.

Another common example of solicitation involves illegal as well as legal drugs. Anyone who asks someone to either purchase or sells illegal drugs has committed criminal solicitation.  In the case of legal prescription drugs, it would be a case of criminal solicitation if one person asked another to fraudulently obtain a prescription or to sell their prescription and or drugs.

Solicitation in itself is not a crime. Many forms of solicitation are legal. For instance, a person may ask (solicit) another person to invest money in their business which is a legitimate legal business, and that would be a form of legal solicitation. Someone may also solicit others to come to their restaurant and take advantage of a coupon or special deal, and that would be a fully legal form of solicitation in most circumstances.  Solicitation only becomes a crime if one person solicits the other person to commit a criminal act.

If you have been charged with criminal solicitation it is important to obtain the services of a Miami criminal defense attorney as soon as possible. If arrested, you have the right to remain silent and you have the right to keep silent until consulting with an attorney.

By obtaining the services of someone like south Florida’s Evan Hoffman, you may be able to keep from making a statement that may cause you to incriminate yourself.

Mr. Hoffman specializes in criminal defense and can consult with you and help you build a strong defense. Give him a call today for a free consultation.

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