Philadelphia Criminal Law News

Prostitution / Solicitation in Philadelphia

The “world’s oldest profession” is a crime in every state in the country with the exception of some parts of Nevada. Prostitution entails offering, agreeing to, or engaging in a sexual act for compensation such as money or drugs. Thus, several people involved in the act can be charged under the crime of prostitution: the person providing services (for “prostitution”), the customer paying for services (“solicitation of prostitution), and any middleman (for “pandering” or “pimping”).

Prosecutors will often offer plea deals or immunity to sex workers who help law enforcement with the investigation of prostitution rings. If you have been charged with this type of offense, you should speak with a Philadelphia criminal defense attorney, who you can find by viewing FindLaw’s directory of Philadelphia criminal defense attorneys.

Recently in Prostitution / Solicitation Category

Blogger Charged for Threatening Philly Cop, DA on Facebook

Sure, we've all had our moments with the police. We've been pulled over for speeding, told to move along, or even arrested. While such incidents can make us angry, we usually don't act on that anger.

But one Philadelphia blogger acted differently. Joshua Scott Albert has been charged with solicitation to commit murder, making terroristic threats, and harassment for setting up Facebook pages that support the killers of Officer Moses Walker. Albert also called for the murder of the district attorney and the head of the police union, according to the Philadelphia Daily News.

Facebook has already taken down the pages, and Albert defended his actions on his blog by pointing out there are other Facebook groups calling for the deaths of public figures like Karl Rove.

Is there a clear-cut line between online rants and real threats?

Tix for Sex: Susan Finkelstein Not Guilty of Prostitution

Two years ago, Phillies' fan Susan Finkelstein placed an ad on Craigslist looking to buy World Series tickets. But Finkelstein wasn't looking to pay with money. Instead, when an undercover cop responded to her ad, Finkelstein allegedly offered to pay with sex.

After her 2010 trial, Finkelstein was convicted of attempted prostitution. The woman appealed, and earlier this week the Superior Court of Pennsylvania overturned the prostitution charge, reports The Wall Street Journal.

11 Charged with Prostitution at Downtowners Fancy Brigade

Following up on a tip, Philadelphia police raided the Downtowners Fancy Brigade and arrested 11 people for prostitution-related offenses.

Six weeks ago, police received a tip that prostitution was going on at the popular South Philadelphia Mummers club, reports the Philadelphia Daily News. According to the tip, women were solicited for sex on the second floor of the building every second Tuesday of the month between 7:00 p.m. and 11 p.m.

Francis Murphy Waives Preliminary Hearing In Solicitation Case

Former Archbishop Carroll High School athletic director Francis Murphy, 39, waived a preliminary hearing on charges of involving solicitation of sex from a former student, reported the Philadelphia Inquirer. During the short hearing in Bridgeport, Murphy remained quiet with his defense attorneys William J. Winning and Timothy Woodward.

A preliminary hearing is often described as a "trial before the trial," according to FindLaw. At this stage of a criminal case, the judge determines whether there is enough evidence to force the defendant to stand trial. The judge uses the legal standard of "probable cause" to decide if the government has gathered enough evidence to even convince a jury that the defendant committed a crime.

Francis Murphy Arrested For Soliciting Sex From Former Student

Authorities reported that the athletic director and coach at Archbishop Carroll High School in Radnor Township was arrested for allegedly seeking sexual favors from a former male student. Bryn Mawr resident Francis Murphy, 39, had supposedly solicited sex from the victim, an 11th grader, in exchange for gifts.

Murphy was arrested in Bridgeport at the Frosty Falls Ice Cream shop, where he had planned to meet the victim for sex, according to the Philadelphia Inquirer. Law enforcement officials charged Murphy, who worked for the school since 1999, with promoting prostitution, attempted corruption of minors, and unlawful contact with a minor.

Criminal Law: Solicitation in Philadelphia

Encouraging, requesting, or demanding a person to engage in criminal conduct with the intent to facilitate the commission of the crime falls under it's own crime known as solicitation. Although solicitation is commonly linked with engaging someone in prostitution, it generally involves engagement in any sort of criminal conduct.

To be charged with solicitation in Philadelphia, the following elements must be present:

  • An individual has the intent to engage in criminal conduct with another person; and
  • An individual requests that someone else engaged in criminal conduct.