The Crime of "Supervising or Aiding a Prostitute"
California Penal Code 653.23 PC

Penal Code 653.23 PC makes it a crime to supervise or assist someone else who either

  • engages in prostitution or
  • loiters for the purpose of engaging in prostitution.

This law also makes it a crime to receive money earned by someone else in a prostitution transaction.1

This offense is related to but distinct from the more widely known crimes of pimping and pandering. It is usually easier for police to make an arrest for supervising or aiding a prostitute than it is to arrest someone for pimping or pandering.2

In fact, the California legislature enacted Penal Code 653.23 PC precisely because they wanted to make it easier for cops to target people they suspect are somehow involved with prostitution.3

Here are some examples of behavior that could lead to an arrest for supervising or otherwise aiding a prostitute:

  • Mike works as a bouncer at a strip club. His boss also operates a prostitution ring. As a favor to his boss, Mike will sometimes accompany a prostitute when she is streetwalking to look for customers. Mike will follow her in his car and watch from a distance to make sure the customer doesn't get violent or try to avoid payment.

    One night the police arrest the prostitute after an officer poses as a john. Mike could be convicted of aiding a prostitute even though he had no role in arranging a prostitution transaction and would not have gotten any money from it.

  • Nancy is a former prostitute who was convicted for solicitation three years ago. She goes to a club with her friend Shelley, who owes her money.

    At the club, Shelley performs oral sex on a man in the bathroom for $250. Shelley gives half of that money to Nancy to pay back what she owes her. Nancy could be convicted of violating Penal Code 653.23 PC.

  • Bob knows his female friend Laura sometimes turns tricks for extra money. Laura asks Bob to drive her to an area where streetwalkers hang out and wait in his car while she looks for johns.

    Bob doesn't approve of this, but he is concerned for Laura's safety. So he agrees, and he keeps a close eye on Laura while he waits in his car. Bob could be convicted of aiding a prostitute.
Penalties

Supervising or aiding a prostitute is a misdemeanor in California.4 This means that if you are convicted, you may be imprisoned in the county jail for no more than six months, fined no more than one thousand dollars ($1,000), or both.5

Defenses

The crime of supervising or assisting a prostitute covers a wide range of behavior.  It's a tough charge to fight, and an experienced California criminal defense attorney is essential.

There are legal defenses that you can assert against a Penal Code 653.23 PC charge of supervising or aiding a prostitute.  You can argue that you did not actually intend to assist in a prostitution crime or that you made a mistake of fact. You may also argue that you cannot be convicted because of entrapment.

In this article, our California criminal defense attorneys6 explain Penal Code 653.23 PC, California's law against supervising or aiding a prostitute, by addressing the following:

1. Penal Code 653.23 PC What is aiding or supervising a prostitute?

1.1. Prohibited behavior

1.2. Actions that can show that you aided a prostitute

1.3. How supervising or aiding a prostitute is different
from pimping

1.4. How supervising or aiding a prostitute is different
from pandering

2. How can you defend yourself against a charge of supervising or aiding prostitution?

2.1. Lack of intent

2.2. Mistake of fact

2.3. Entrapment

3. What are the penalties if you are convicted of supervising or aiding a prostitute?

3.1. Misdemeanor penalties

3.2. Loss of professional license

4. Related Offenses

4.1. Prostitution and solicitation of prostitution

4.2. Loitering with intent to commit prostitution

4.3. Lewd conduct and solicitation of lewd conduct

4.4. Local ordinances

If you would like more information after reading this article, we invite you to contact us at Shouse Law Group.

You may also find helpful information in our related articles on California Legal Defenses; California Misdemeanors; Entrapment; Penal Code 266h & 266i PC California's Pimping and Pandering Laws; Penal Code 647(a) PC California's Lewd Conduct Law; Solicitation of Lewd Conduct; Penal Code 647(b) PC California's Prostitution Law; and Penal Code 653.22 PC California's Loitering for Prostitution Law.

1. Penal Code 653.23 PC What is aiding or supervising a prostitute?

1.1. Prohibited behavior

Penal Code 653.23 PC makes it a crime to do any of the following three things:

  1. Directing, supervising, recruiting, or helping someone else in committing prostitution or solicitation.
  2. Directing, supervising, recruiting, or helping someone else in loitering for the purpose of committing prostitution.
  3. Collecting or receiving some or all of the money that someone else earns by committing prostitution.7

Prostitution is defined as any lewd act between two or more people that takes place for money or other payment.8

Loitering for the purpose of committing prostitution is defined as lingering or delaying in a public place with the actual intent to commit prostitution.9

1.2. Actions that can show that you aided a prostitute

Almost all arrests for aiding a prostitute are made by patrol officers who catch people in the act. The law spells out certain behavior that can indicate to cops that someone has violated Penal Code 653.23 PC:

  • The person repeatedly speaks or communicates in some other way with another person who is loitering for the purpose of prostitution;
  • The person repeatedly or continuously monitors or watches another person who is loitering for the purpose of prostitution;
  • The person repeatedly starts or tries to start conversations with, or stops or tries to stop, pedestrians or drivers, with the goal of soliciting, arranging, or facilitating an act of prostitution between the pedestrians or motorists and another person who is loitering for the purpose of prostitution;
  • The person circles an area in a motor vehicle and repeatedly beckons to, contacts, or tries to contact or stop pedestrians or other drivers, with the goal of soliciting, arranging, or facilitating an act of prostitution between the pedestrians or motorists and another person who is loitering for the purpose of prostitution;
  • The person receives or appears to receive money from another person who is loitering for the purpose of prostitution;
  • The person does any of the things listed above on behalf of two or more people who are loitering for the purpose of prostitution;
  • The person has engaged in any of the behavior listed above, or any other behavior that indicates prostitution activity, within the past six (6) months; or
  • The person has been convicted of any of the following within the five (5) years prior to being arrested: lewd conduct in public, soliciting lewd conduct in public, prostitution, soliciting prostitution, loitering for the purpose of prostitution, pimping, pandering, or any other crime related to prostitution.10

Moreover, any of these behaviors is more likely to show that someone is aiding a prostitute if it happens in an area that is known for prostitution.11

Santa Ana criminal defense attorney John Murray12 explains:

"Police and prosecutors thought traditional laws against prostitution and pimping weren't giving them enough ammunition against these crimes. So the California legislature passed Penal Code 653.23 PC. This law targets people who may have been only slightly involved with prostitution activity. Because this law provides an excuse for arrests based on pretty limited evidence, innocent people are accused of aiding prostitution all the time."

1.3. How supervising or otherwise aiding a prostitute is different from pimping

The differences between Penal Code 653.23 and California's laws against pimping and pandering can be confusing. A person can be charged with both aiding a prostitute and pimping, or aiding a prostitute and pandering, at the same time.13

Pimping is defined as either:

  1. Soliciting prostitution by finding a john for a prostitute and collecting a fee from the john or some of the prostitute's pay, or
  2. collecting some or all of a prostitute's pay even if you played no part in finding the john.14

Here are some of the main differences between pimping and aiding a prostitute:

  • To be convicted of pimping, you have to have helped find customers for a prostitute and received some money for your role in the transaction.15 But you can be convicted of aiding a prostitute even if you did not find the john or arrange the transaction...and even if you receive no money for your role.16
    Example: Cathy runs an escort service that connects high-end call girls with customers; she keeps half of what the customers pay. She is guilty of pimping.

    Example: Darren is a teenager trying to gain acceptance from older gang members in his neighborhood. Some of the gang members make money from pimping. They ask Darren to hang around nearby while one of the prostitutes is streetwalking, to keep a lookout for cops. Darren does not speak to the johns and does not get any money for doing this. Nevertheless, he could be guilty of aiding a prostitute.
  • To be convicted of pimping because you received money from a prostitute, you have to be living off of that person's prostitution earnings. You also need to know that they are a prostitute.17 In contrast, you can be convicted of aiding a prostitute if you receive any money that was earned from prostitution, for any reason. 18
    Example: Elizabeth and her boyfriend Nick live together. They both live entirely off the money Elizabeth earns as a prostitute. Nick could be guilty of pimping.

    Example: Chad supports himself as a bartender at a strip club. He is dating Francine, one of the strippers. One night Francine earns $500 for having sex with a customer who propositioned her. She gives the money to Chad so he can buy himself a new suit. Chad could be guilty of aiding a prostitute, even if he had nothing to do with setting up the transaction.
  • You can't be convicted of pimping unless a prostitution transaction actually takes place.19 But you can be convicted of aiding a prostitute even if you only helped someone loiter with the intent to commit prostitution-even if they didn't find any customers.20
  • Pimping is a felony and may be punished by three, four, or six years in state prison (or three, six, or eight years if the prostitute was under 16).21 Aiding a prostitute is only a misdemeanor22 and may be punished by six months in the county jail, a fine of no more than one thousand dollars ($1,000), or both.23
  • 1.4. How supervising or otherwise aiding a prostitute is different from pandering

    Pandering is similar to pimping. You violate California's law against pandering when you encourage or persuade someone to engage in prostitution, and make that person available for the purpose of prostitution.24

    Like pimping, pandering is a felony and may be punished by three, four, or six years in state prison (or three, six, or eight years if the prostitute was under 16).25

    The crime of supervising or aiding a prostitute includes "recruiting" someone to engage in an act of prostitution or to loiter for the purpose of prostitution.26 It seems like this should be more or less the same crime as pandering.

    But the California 6th district court of appeal has held that you only violate Penal Code 653.23 PC when you recruit "customers for prostitutes or prostitutes for customers," not when you recruit someone to become a prostitute.27

    In other words, you are guilty of supervising or otherwise aiding a prostitute only if the person you recruited actually starts working as a prostitute or loitering for prostitution. But you can be guilty of pandering the minute she agrees to work as a prostitute.28

    Example: Jim recruits Julia for a job at a massage parlor that doubles as a brothel. Jim is now guilty of pandering.

    Later, after earning money from prostitution at the massage parlor, Julia gives several hundred dollars of her earnings to Jim. This is to show her gratitude to him for finding her the job. Jim may now be convicted of aiding or supervising a prostitute as well as pandering.
    2. How can you defend yourself against a charge of supervising or aiding prostitution?

    An experienced attorney can help you assert important California legal defenses against a Penal Code 653.23 charge. Some of the legal defenses that may be helpful are:

    2.1. Lack of intent

    Generally speaking, you cannot be convicted of a crime in California unless you intended to do something wrong, knew you were doing something wrong, or were criminally negligent (that is, should have known you were doing something wrong).29

    If you did not intend to aid or supervise a prostitute, you may be able to defeat these charges. Consider an example:

    Marcus is a former pimp who has had a change of heart and has now made it his mission to help prostitutes escape from prostitution. He has been trying to persuade Annie, a streetwalker in his neighborhood, to quit prostitution. Because he is concerned about Annie's safety on the street, he sometimes hangs out nearby in his car watching her and steps in if a potential customer acts threatening.

    If Marcus is arrested for aiding Annie, he may be able to defend himself by arguing that he did not intend to help her engage in prostitution or loitering for prostitution. In fact, he intended the opposite-he was trying to persuade her NOT to engage in prostitution.

    2.2. Mistake of fact

    Mistake of fact can be a very effective defense. If you honestly and reasonably believed something that wasn't true, you may be able to show that you didn't have the criminal intent or mental state required for the crime.30

    For example, let's say you regularly receive money from your girlfriend, and she tells you that she earned it from tips at her job as a cocktail waitress. But it turns out it is money she earned from prostitution.

    You have technically violated Penal Code 653.23 by receiving proceeds from prostitution. 31 But if you honestly and reasonably believed you girlfriend was telling the truth, you should not be convicted.32

    2.3. Entrapment

    Entrapment happens when a police officer induces a normally law-abiding person to commit a crime they otherwise would not have committed. Arrests for violations of Penal Code 653.23 PC are often made by cops operating undercover. This can trigger the California entrapment defense.

    Entrapment occurs only when a police officer behaves in an overbearing way-for example, by applying pressure, harassment, fraud, flattery, or threats.33

    Here is an example:

    Luis is a bartender at a bar that the police believe is a front for a brothel. One night an attractive female cop named Ellen conducts a sting operation. She comes into the bar and flirts aggressively with Luis. She then tells him that she's interested in working as a prostitute and she wants him to "set her up" with something.

    Luis says he can't help her with this. But Ellen continues to flirt with him and tells him sad stories about how badly she needs the money. Luis is strongly sexually attracted to Ellen and also feels compassion for her.

    Finally, Luis agrees to drive her to a nearby area where prostitutes often look for customers and to help protect her from abusive johns. He drives her to the area after his shift ends and is arrested for aiding a prostitute.

    Ellen's aggressive appeals to Luis' sexuality and sense of compassion could be entrapment. With the help of a California criminal defense lawyer who understands the entrapment defense, Luis may be able to avoid conviction.

    3. What are the penalties if you are convicted of aiding a prostitute?

    3.1. Misdemeanor penalties

    Penal Code 653.23 PC is a California misdemeanor.34 If you are convicted of supervising or otherwise aiding a prostitute, you face a maximum one thousand dollar ($1,000) fine and up to six (6) months in a county jail.35

    3.2. Loss of professional license

    California health care providers can have their licenses suspended or revoked if they aid or abet prostitution, solicitation, lewd conduct, or pimping in the workplace.36 They may also have to pay a civil fine of up to two thousand five hundred dollars ($2,500) for a first offense and five thousand dollars $5,000) for any later offenses.37

    A conviction for aiding prostitution could easily lead to these penalties, if the prostitution occurred in the person's business. These penalties should be of special concern to certified massage therapists,38 who may be accused of aiding or abetting actions taken by their employees.

    4. Related Offenses

    In addition to pimping and pandering, which we discussed above, other crimes related to aiding prostitution are:

    4.1. Prostitution and solicitation of prostitution

    California Penal Code 647(b) prohibits prostitution and solicitation of prostitution.

    For you to be convicted of aiding a prostitute, the person you helped must actually commit prostitution, solicitation of prostitution, or loitering for prostitution.39

    Also, you are more likely to be convicted of aiding a prostitute if you have been convicted of prostitution or solicitation of prostitution yourself in the past five (5) years.40

    The person you assisted has committed prostitution if she

    1. engaged in an act of prostitution, and
    2. did so willfully, which means deliberately or on purpose.41

    The person you assisted has committed "solicitation" if she

    1. solicited another person to engage in an act of prostitution, and
    2. did so with the specific intent of engaging in prostitution.42

    Prostitution and soliciting for prostitution are misdemeanors in California.

    4.2. Loitering with intent to commit prostitution

    You may be convicted of aiding a prostitute even if the person you aided did not actually commit prostitution. She only needs to have committed the crime of loitering with intent to commit prostitution in violation of Penal Code 653.22 PC.43

    In order to be convicted of loitering for prostitution, the other person must:

    1. Loiter (that is, delay or linger with no lawful purpose),
    2. In a public place (that is, a place open to the public),
    3. With the intent to engage in prostitution.44

    Loitering for the purpose of engaging in prostitution is a misdemeanors in California.45

    4.3. Lewd conduct in public

    It is more likely that you will be convicted of supervising or aiding a prostitute if you have a prior conviction for lewd conduct in public under Penal Code 647(a) PC. The same is true of a prior conviction for solicitation of lewd conduct.46

    Lewd conduct in public means touching your or another person's private parts for sexual arousal, when you know or reasonably should know that there is someone else nearby who would take offense.47

    Lewd conduct and solicitation of lewd conduct are misdemeanors in California.48

    4.4. Local ordinances

    When it passed Penal Code 653.23 PC, the California legislature made it clear that it did not want to prevent local governments from passing their own laws on supervising or aiding prostitution.49 So city and county governments can impose tougher restrictions and additional punishments on this behavior.

    In the city of Los Angeles, the city government may be able to seize and forfeit your car if you use your car to commit the crime of aiding a prostitute.50

    Call us for help...
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    If you or loved one is charged with Penal Code 653.23 PC supervising or aiding a prostitute and you are looking to hire an attorney for representation, we invite you to contact us at Shouse Law Group. We can provide a free consultation in office or by phone. We have local offices in Los Angeles, the San Fernando Valley, Pasadena, Long Beach, Orange County, Ventura, San Bernardino, Rancho Cucamonga, Riverside, San Diego, Sacramento, Oakland, San Francisco, San Jose and throughout California.

    Online Resources:

    Criminal cases in California courts

    Legal References:

    1Penal Code 653.23 PC - Supervising or otherwise aiding a prostitute.  ("(a) It is unlawful for any person to do either of the following: (1) Direct, supervise, recruit, or otherwise aid another person in the commission of a violation of subdivision (b) of Section 647 or subdivision (a) of Section 653.22. (2) Collect or receive all or part of the proceeds earned from an act or acts of prostitution committed by another person in violation of subdivision (b) of Section 647.")

    2 Compare same with Penal Code 266h PC - Pimping and pimping a minor; punishment ("(a) Except as provided in subdivision (b), any person who, knowing another person is a prostitute, lives or derives support or maintenance in whole or in part from the earnings or proceeds of the person's prostitution, or from money loaned or advanced to or charged against that person by any keeper or manager or inmate of a house or other place where prostitution is practiced or allowed, or who solicits or receives compensation for soliciting for the person, is guilty of pimping, a felony, and shall be punishable by imprisonment in the state prison for three, four, or six years. (b) Any person who, knowing another person is a prostitute, lives or derives support or maintenance in whole or in part from the earnings or proceeds of the person's prostitution, or from money loaned or advanced to or charged against that person by any keeper or manager or inmate of a house or other place where prostitution is practiced or allowed, or who solicits or receives compensation for soliciting for the person, when the prostitute is a minor, is guilty of pimping a minor, a felony, and shall be punishable as follows: (1) If the person engaged in prostitution is a minor 16 years of age or older, the offense is punishable by imprisonment in the state prison for three, four, or six years. (2) If the person engaged in prostitution is under 16 years of age, the offense is punishable by imprisonment in the state prison for three, six, or eight years."), and with Penal Code 266i PC - Pandering and pandering with a minor; punishment ("(a) Except as provided in subdivision (b), any person who does any of the following is guilty of pandering, a felony, and shall be punishable by imprisonment in the state prison for three, four, or six years: (1) Procures another person for the purpose of prostitution. (2) By promises, threats, violence, or by any device or scheme, causes, induces, persuades, or encourages another person to become a prostitute. (3) Procures for another person a place as an inmate in a house of prostitution or as an inmate of any place in which prostitution is encouraged or allowed within this state. (4) By promises, threats, violence, or by any device or scheme, causes, induces, persuades, or encourages an inmate of a house of prostitution, or any other place in which prostitution is encouraged or allowed, to remain therein as an inmate. (5) By fraud or artifice, or by duress of person or goods, or by abuse of any position of confidence or authority, procures another person for the purpose of prostitution, or to enter any place in which prostitution is encouraged or allowed within this state, or to come into this state or leave this state for the purpose of prostitution. (6) Receives or gives, or agrees to receive or give, any money or thing of value for procuring, or attempting to procure, another person for the purpose of prostitution, or to come into this state or leave this state for the purpose of prostitution. (b) Any person who does any of the acts described in subdivision (a) with another person who is a minor is guilty of pandering, a felony, and shall be punishable as follows: (1) If the other person is a minor 16 years of age or older, the offense is punishable by imprisonment in the state prison for three, four, or six years. (2) If the other person is under 16 years of age, the offense is punishable by imprisonment in the state prison for three, six, or eight years.").

    3 Penal Code 653.20 PC - Definitions (Historical and statutory notes). ("Section 3 of Stats.1995, c. 981 (A.B.1035), provides: '(a) Section 4 of this act is enacted for the purpose of assisting local law enforcement in controlling prostitution-related activities and to minimize the adverse effect these activities have upon local communities. (b) The Legislature finds and determines that loitering for the purposes of engaging in a prostitution offense constitutes a public nuisance which, if left unabated, adversely affects a community's image, public safety, and residential and business development, and tends to encourage further criminal activity. Furthermore, prostitution-related activities consume an inordinate amount of limited law enforcement resources.'")

    4 Penal Code 653.26 PC - Violation is misdemeanor. ("A violation of any provision of this chapter is a misdemeanor.")

    5 Penal Code 19 PC  - Punishment for misdemeanor; punishment not otherwise prescribed.  ("Except in cases where a different punishment is prescribed by any law of this state, every offense declared to be a misdemeanor is punishable by imprisonment in the county jail not exceeding six months, or by fine not exceeding one thousand dollars ($1,000), or by both.")

    See also California Penal Code 19.2 PC -- Punishment for misdemeanor; maximum confinement. ("In no case shall any person sentenced to confinement in a county or city jail, or in a county or joint county penal farm, road camp, work camp, or other county adult detention facility, or committed to the sheriff for placement in any county adult detention facility, on conviction of a misdemeanor, or as a condition of probation upon conviction of either a felony or a misdemeanor, or upon commitment for civil contempt, or upon default in the payment of a fine upon conviction of either a felony or a misdemeanor, or for any reason except upon conviction of more than one offense when consecutive sentences have been imposed, be committed for a period in excess of one year; provided, however, that the time allowed on parole shall not be considered as a part of the period of confinement.")

    6 Our California criminal defense attorneys have local Los Angeles law offices in Beverly Hills, Burbank, Glendale, Lancaster, Long Beach, Los Angeles, Pasadena, Pomona, Torrance, Van Nuys, West Covina, and Whittier.  We have additional law offices conveniently located throughout the state in Orange County, San Diego, Riverside, San Bernardino, Ventura, San Jose, Oakland, the San Francisco Bay area, Sacramento, and several nearby cities.

    7 Penal Code 653.23 PC - Supervising or otherwise aiding a prostitute.  ("(a) It is unlawful for any person to do either of the following: (1) Direct, supervise, recruit, or otherwise aid another person in the commission of a violation of subdivision (b) of Section 647 or subdivision (a) of Section 653.22. (2) Collect or receive all or part of the proceeds earned from an act or acts of prostitution committed by another person in violation of subdivision (b) of Section 647.")

    See also Penal Code 647 PC - Disorderly conduct. ("Except as provided in subdivision (l), every person who commits any of the following acts is guilty of disorderly conduct, a misdemeanor: . . .  (b) Who solicits or who agrees to engage in or who engages in any act of prostitution. A person agrees to engage in an act of prostitution when, with specific intent to so engage, he or she manifests an acceptance of an offer or solicitation to so engage, regardless of whether the offer or solicitation was made by a person who also possessed the specific intent to engage in prostitution. No agreement to engage in an act of prostitution shall constitute a violation of this subdivision unless some act, in addition to the agreement, is done within this state in furtherance of the commission of an act of prostitution by the person agreeing to engage in that act. As used in this subdivision, "prostitution" includes any lewd act between persons for money or other consideration. . . .")

    See also Penal Code 653.22 PC - Loitering for the purpose of engaging in a prostitution offense.  ("(a) It is unlawful for any person to loiter in any public place with the intent to commit prostitution. This intent is evidenced by acting in a manner and under circumstances which openly demonstrate the purpose of inducing, enticing, or soliciting prostitution, or procuring another to commit prostitution.")

    8 Penal Code 647(b) PC. (" . . . As used in this subdivision, "prostitution" includes any lewd act between persons for money or other consideration. . . .")

    9 Penal Code 653.22 PC - Loitering for the purpose of engaging in a prostitution offense.  ("(a) It is unlawful for any person to loiter in any public place with the intent to commit prostitution. This intent is evidenced by acting in a manner and under circumstances which openly demonstrate the purpose of inducing, enticing, or soliciting prostitution, or procuring another to commit prostitution.")

    See also Penal Code 653.20 PC - Definitions. ("(b) 'Public place' means an area open to the public, or an alley, plaza, park, driveway, or parking lot, or an automobile, whether moving or not, or a building open to the general public, including one which serves food or drink, or provides entertainment, or the doorways and entrances to a building or dwelling, or the grounds enclosing a building or dwelling. (c) 'Loiter' means to delay or linger without a lawful purpose for being on the property and for the purpose of committing a crime as opportunity may be discovered.")

    10 Penal Code 653.23 PC - Supervising or otherwise aiding a prostitute. "(b) Among the circumstances that may be considered in determining whether a person is in violation of subdivision (a) are that the person does the following: (1) Repeatedly speaks or communicates with another person who is acting in violation of subdivision (a) of Section 653.22. (2) Repeatedly or continuously monitors or watches another person who is acting in violation of subdivision (a) of Section 653.22. (3) Repeatedly engages or attempts to engage in conversation with pedestrians or motorists to solicit, arrange, or facilitate an act of prostitution between the pedestrians or motorists and another person who is acting in violation of subdivision (a) of Section 653.22. (4) Repeatedly stops or attempts to stop pedestrians or motorists to solicit, arrange, or facilitate an act of prostitution between pedestrians or motorists and another person who is acting in violation of subdivision (a) of Section 653.22. (5) Circles an area in a motor vehicle and repeatedly beckons to, contacts, or attempts to contact or stop pedestrians or other motorists to solicit, arrange, or facilitate an act of prostitution between the pedestrians or motorists and another person who is acting in violation of subdivision (a) of Section 653.22. (6) Receives or appears to receive money from another person who is acting in violation of subdivision (a) of Section 653.22. (7) Engages in any of the behavior described in paragraphs (1) to (6), inclusive, in regard to or on behalf of two or more persons who are in violation of subdivision (a) of Section 653.22. (8) Has been convicted of violating this section, subdivision (a) or (b) of Section 647, subdivision (a) of Section 653.22, Section 266h, or 266i, or any other offense relating to or involving prostitution within five years of the arrest under this section. (9) Has engaged, within six months prior to the arrest under subdivision (a), in any behavior described in this subdivision, with the exception of paragraph (8), or in any other behavior indicative of prostitution activity.")

    11 See same, subdivision (c). ("(c) . . . The circumstances set forth in subdivision (b) should be considered particularly salient if they occur in an area that is known for prostitution activity. . . .")

    12 Santa Ana criminal defense lawyer John Murray has successfully defended numerous clients charged with California sex crimes, including supervising or aiding a prostitute under Penal Code 653.23 PC.  Mr. Murray represents clients at a number of locations of the California courts, including the Central Justice Center in Santa Ana, the Harbor Justice Center in Newport Beach, the North Justice Center in Fullerton, the West Justice Center in Westminster, and the Laguna Hills Harbor Justice Center.

    13 See same, subdivision (d). ("(d) Nothing in this section shall preclude the prosecution of a suspect for a violation of Section 266h or 266i or for any other offense, or for a violation of this section in conjunction with a violation of Section 266h or 266i or any other offense.")

    14 California Jury Instructions, Criminal (CALJIC 10.70) -- Pimping, defined. ("(Penal Code § 266h, subdivision (a)) [Defendant is accused [in Count[s] ] of having committed the crime of pimping in violation of section 266h, subdivision (a) of the Penal Code.] Every person who, knowing another person is a prostitute, lives or derives support or maintenance in whole or in part from the earnings or proceeds of that other person's prostitution, or from money loaned or advanced to or charged against that other person by any keeper or manager or inmate of a house or other place where prostitution is practiced or allowed [or] [solicits or receives compensation for soliciting for the person], is guilty of the crime of pimping in violation of Penal Code section 266h, subdivision (a). "Prostitution" is engaging in sexual intercourse or any lewd act between persons for money or other consideration. In order to prove this crime, each of the following elements must be proved: 1 The defendant knew that another person was a prostitute, and [2 That defendant lived or derived support or maintenance in whole or in part from the earnings or proceeds of the other person's prostitution, or from money loaned or advanced to or charged against that other person by any keeper or manager or inmate of a house or other place where prostitution is practiced or allowed.] [or] [2 That defendant [solicited] [or] [received] compensation for soliciting customers for the prostitution services of the other person.]")

    15 Penal Code 266h PC - Pimping and pimping a minor; punishment. ("(a) . . . [A]ny person who, knowing another person is a prostitute,  . . .  solicits or receives compensation for soliciting for the person, is guilty of pimping, a felony . . . .")

    16 Penal Code 653.23 PC - Supervising or otherwise aiding a prostitute.  ("(a) It is unlawful for any person to do either of the following: (1) Direct, supervise, recruit, or otherwise aid another person in the commission of a violation of subdivision (b) of Section 647 or subdivision (a) of Section 653.22. . . .") (emphasis added)

    17 California Penal Code 266h - Pimping and pimping a minor; punishment. ("(a) . . . [A]ny person who, knowing another person is a prostitute, lives or derives support or maintenance in whole or in part from the earnings or proceeds of the person's prostitution, or from money loaned or advanced to or charged against that person by any keeper or manager or inmate of a house or other place where prostitution is practiced or allowed . . . is guilty of pimping, a felony . . . .") (emphasis added)

    18 Penal Code 653.23 PC - Supervising or otherwise aiding a prostitute.  ("(a) It is unlawful for any person to . . . Collect or receive all or part of the proceeds earned from an act or acts of prostitution committed by another person in violation of subdivision (b) of Section 647.") (emphasis added)

    19 California Jury Instructions, Criminal (CALJIC 10.70) -- Pimping, defined. ("In order to prove this crime, each of the following elements must be proved: 1 The defendant knew that another person was a prostitute, and [2 That defendant lived or derived support or maintenance in whole or in part from the earnings or proceeds of the other person's prostitution, or from money loaned or advanced to or charged against that other person by any keeper or manager or inmate of a house or other place where prostitution is practiced or allowed.] [or] [2 That defendant [solicited] [or] [received] compensation for soliciting customers for the prostitution services of the other person.]")

    20 Penal Code 653.23 PC - Supervising or otherwise aiding a prostitute.  ("(a) It is unlawful for any person to do either of the following: (1) Direct, supervise, recruit, or otherwise aid another person in the commission of a violation of . . .  subdivision (a) of Section 653.22. . . .")

    See also Penal Code 653.22 PC - Loitering for the purpose of engaging in a prostitution offense.  ("(a) It is unlawful for any person to loiter in any public place with the intent to commit prostitution. This intent is evidenced by acting in a manner and under circumstances which openly demonstrate the purpose of inducing, enticing, or soliciting prostitution, or procuring another to commit prostitution.")

    21 California Penal Code 266h - Pimping and pimping a minor; punishment. ("(a) Except as provided in subdivision (b), any person who, knowing another person is a prostitute, lives or derives support or maintenance in whole or in part from the earnings or proceeds of the person's prostitution, or from money loaned or advanced to or charged against that person by any keeper or manager or inmate of a house or other place where prostitution is practiced or allowed, or who solicits or receives compensation for soliciting for the person, is guilty of pimping, a felony, and shall be punishable by imprisonment in the state prison for three, four, or six years. (b) Any person who, knowing another person is a prostitute, lives or derives support or maintenance in whole or in part from the earnings or proceeds of the person's prostitution, or from money loaned or advanced to or charged against that person by any keeper or manager or inmate of a house or other place where prostitution is practiced or allowed, or who solicits or receives compensation for soliciting for the person, when the prostitute is a minor, is guilty of pimping a minor, a felony, and shall be punishable as follows: (1) If the person engaged in prostitution is a minor 16 years of age or older, the offense is punishable by imprisonment in the state prison for three, four, or six years. (2) If the person engaged in prostitution is under 16 years of age, the offense is punishable by imprisonment in the state prison for three, six, or eight years.")

    22 Penal Code 653.26 PC - Violation is misdemeanor. ("A violation of any provision of this chapter is a misdemeanor.")

    23 Penal Code 19 PC  - Punishment for misdemeanor; punishment not otherwise prescribed.  ("Except in cases where a different punishment is prescribed by any law of this state, every offense declared to be a misdemeanor is punishable by imprisonment in the county jail not exceeding six months, or by fine not exceeding one thousand dollars ($1,000), or by both.")

    24 Penal Code 266i PC - Pandering and pandering with a minor; punishment. ("(a) Except as provided in subdivision (b), any person who does any of the following is guilty of pandering, a felony, and shall be punishable by imprisonment in the state prison for three, four, or six years: (1) Procures another person for the purpose of prostitution. (2) By promises, threats, violence, or by any device or scheme, causes, induces, persuades, or encourages another person to become a prostitute. (3) Procures for another person a place as an inmate in a house of prostitution or as an inmate of any place in which prostitution is encouraged or allowed within this state. (4) By promises, threats, violence, or by any device or scheme, causes, induces, persuades, or encourages an inmate of a house of prostitution, or any other place in which prostitution is encouraged or allowed, to remain therein as an inmate. (5) By fraud or artifice, or by duress of person or goods, or by abuse of any position of confidence or authority, procures another person for the purpose of prostitution, or to enter any place in which prostitution is encouraged or allowed within this state, or to come into this state or leave this state for the purpose of prostitution. (6) Receives or gives, or agrees to receive or give, any money or thing of value for procuring, or attempting to procure, another person for the purpose of prostitution, or to come into this state or leave this state for the purpose of prostitution. (b) Any person who does any of the acts described in subdivision (a) with another person who is a minor is guilty of pandering, a felony, and shall be punishable as follows: (1) If the other person is a minor 16 years of age or older, the offense is punishable by imprisonment in the state prison for three, four, or six years. (2) If the other person is under 16 years of age, the offense is punishable by imprisonment in the state prison for three, six, or eight years.")

    See also CALJIC 10.71 -- Pandering, defined. ("(Penal Code § 266i, subdivision (a)) [Defendant is accused [in Count[s] ] of having committed the crime of pandering in violation of section 266i, subdivision (a) of the Penal Code.] Every person who [with the specific intent to influence another person to [become] [or] [continue to be] a prostitute]: [procures another person for the purpose of prostitution,] [by promises, threats, violence, or by any device or scheme, causes, induces, persuades or encourages another person to become a prostitute,] [procures for another person a place as an inmate in a house of prostitution or as an inmate of any place in which prostitution is encouraged or allowed within this state,] [by promises, threats, violence or by any device or scheme, causes, induces, persuades or encourages an inmate of a house of prostitution, or any other place in which prostitution is encouraged or allowed, to remain therein as an inmate,] [by fraud or artifice, or by duress of person or goods, or by abuse of any position of confidence or authority, procures another person for the purpose of prostitution, or to enter any place in which prostitution is encouraged or allowed within this state, or to come into this state or leave this state for the purpose of prostitution,] [receives or gives, or agrees to receive or give, any money or thing of value for procuring, or attempting to procure, another person for the purpose of prostitution, or to come into this state or leave this state for the purpose of prostitution,] is guilty of the crime of pandering in violation of section 266i, subdivision (a) of the Penal Code. "Prostitution" is engaging in sexual intercourse or any lewd act between persons for money or other consideration. In order to prove this crime, each of the following elements must be proved: [1 A person procured another person for the purpose of prostitution;] [or] [1 A person by promises, threats, violence or by any device or scheme, caused or induced, persuaded or encouraged another person to become a prostitute;] [or] [1 A person [procured for another person a place] [or] [induced, persuaded or encouraged another person to remain] as an inmate in a house of prostitution, or a place where prostitution is allowed or encouraged in this state;] [or] [1 A person [by fraud or artifice] [or] [by duress of person or goods] [or] [by abuse of any position of confidence or authority] procured another person for the purpose of prostitution, or [induced, persuaded or encouraged] another person to enter any place in which prostitution is encouraged or allowed in this state, or to enter or leave this state for the purpose of prostitution;] [or] [1 A person received or gave, or agreed to receive or give, money or thing of value for procuring, or attempting to procure, another person for the purpose of prostitution, or to come into this state or to leave this state for the purpose of prostitution;] and 2 The procuring, causing, inducing, encouraging or persuading was accomplished by [promises] [,] [threats] [,] [violence] [or] [any device or scheme] [; and 3 The person procuring, causing, inducing, persuading or encouraging engaged in that conduct with the specific intent to influence the other person to [become] [or] [continue to be] a prostitute].")

    25 Penal Code 266i PC - Pandering and pandering with a minor; punishment.

    26 Penal Code 653.23 PC - Supervising or otherwise aiding a prostitute.  ("(a) It is unlawful for any person to do either of the following: (1) Direct, supervise, recruit, or otherwise aid another person in the commission of a violation of subdivision (b) of Section 647 or subdivision (a) of Section 653.22. . . .")

    27 See People v. Rogers (2002), Cal.App.6th - 2002 WL 31771800, at ∗8. ("Reading it in the context of the entire statutory scheme, we see that section 653.23(a)(1) prohibits recruitment to the extent that the recruitment aids the actual solicitation or attempted solicitation of an act of prostitution. There is no implication that "recruitment" as it is used in this section involves the procurement of persons to be prostitutes. The recruitment prohibited would include the recruitment of customers for prostitutes or prostitutes for customers, but would not include the recruitment of a person to be a prostitute.")

    28 See same. ("Applying this law to the facts of this case we can see how the two crimes differ. The evidence to support the pandering charge was Elizabeth's testimony that defendant approached her and asked her if she needed work to make money. Elizabeth understood that the work to which defendant was referring was prostitution. Defendant then took her to the Motel 6 where Ms. Graves told her how to act. The offense of pandering was complete as early as the point at which defendant offered Elizabeth work as a prostitute and no later than the point at which she accepted the offer. But defendant could not violate section 653.23(a)(1) until Elizabeth herself was violating one of the prostitution statutes. Elizabeth did not violate either of the prostitution statutes when she agreed to work as a prostitute. The agreement contemplated by section 647(b) is an agreement to engage in an act of prostitution not an agreement to act as a prostitute generally. Furthermore, a violation of section 647(b) requires some act in addition to an agreement. And Elizabeth did not violate section 653.22 simply by agreeing to work as a prostitute because that section requires loitering "in any public place." Until Elizabeth actually began working as a prostitute, she was not committing a violation of section 647(b). And until she installed herself in a public place with the intent to solicit acts of prostitution, she was not committing a violation of section 653.23.")

    29 Penal Code 20 PC- Crime; unity of act and intent, or criminal negligence. ("TO CONSTITUTE CRIME THERE MUST BE UNITY OF ACT AND INTENT. In every crime or public offense there must exist a union, or joint operation of act and intent, or criminal negligence.")

    See also In re Jorge M., (2000) 23 Cal.4th 866, 872. ("That the statute contains no reference to knowledge or other language of mens rea is not itself dispositive. As we recently explained, the requirement that, for a criminal conviction, the prosecution prove some form of guilty intent, knowledge, or criminal negligence is of such long standing and so fundamental to our criminal law that penal statutes will often be construed to contain such an element despite their failure expressly to state it.")

    30 CALJIC 4.35 -- Ignorance or mistake of fact as a California legal defense. ("An act committed or an omission made in ignorance or by reason of a mistake of fact which disproves any criminal intent is not a crime. Thus a person is not guilty of a crime if [he] [she] commits an act or omits to act under an actual [and reasonable] belief in the existence of certain facts and circumstances which, if true, would make the act or omission lawful.")

    31 Penal Code 653.23 PC - Supervising or otherwise aiding a prostitute.  ("(a) It is unlawful for any person to do either of the following . . . (2) Collect or receive all or part of the proceeds earned from an act or acts of prostitution committed by another person in violation of subdivision (b) of Section 647.")

    32 CALJIC 4.35 -- Ignorance or mistake of fact as a California legal defense.

    33 See People v. West, (1956) 139 Cal.App.2d Supp. 923, 924. ("Entrapment is the conception and planning of an offense by an officer and his procurement of its commission by one who would not have perpetrated it except for the trickery, persuasion, or fraud of the officer. Persuasion or allurement must be used to entrap.")

    34 Penal Code 653.26 PC - Violation is misdemeanor. ("A violation of any provision of this chapter is a misdemeanor.")

    35 Penal Code 19 PC  - Punishment for misdemeanor; punishment not otherwise prescribed.  ("Except in cases where a different punishment is prescribed by any law of this state, every offense declared to be a misdemeanor is punishable by imprisonment in the county jail not exceeding six months, or by fine not exceeding one thousand dollars ($1,000), or by both.")

    36 Business & Professions Code 731 - Violation of specified Penal Code provisions; penalties. "(a) Any person licensed, certified, registered, or otherwise subject to regulation pursuant to this division who engages in, or who aids or abets in, a violation of Section 266h, 266i, 315, 316, or 318 of, or subdivision (a) or (b) of Section 647 of, the Penal Code occurring in the work premises of, or work area under the direct professional supervision or control of, that person, shall be guilty of unprofessional conduct. The license, certification, or registration of that person shall be subject to denial, suspension, or revocation by the appropriate regulatory entity under this division.")

    37 See same, subdivision (b). ("(b) In addition to any penalty provided under any other provision of law, a violation of subdivision (a) shall subject the person to a civil penalty in an amount not to exceed two thousand five hundred dollars ($2,500) for the first offense, and not to exceed five thousand dollars ($5,000) for each subsequent offense, which may be assessed and recovered in a civil action brought by any district attorney. If the action is brought by a district attorney, the penalty recovered shall be paid to the treasurer of the county in which the judgment was entered.")

    38 See Business & Professions Code 4601 - Certification requirements.

    39 Penal Code 653.23 PC - Supervising or otherwise aiding a prostitute.  ("(a) It is unlawful for any person to do either of the following: (1) Direct, supervise, recruit, or otherwise aid another person in the commission of a violation of subdivision (b) of Section 647 or subdivision (a) of Section 653.22. (2) Collect or receive all or part of the proceeds earned from an act or acts of prostitution committed by another person in violation of subdivision (b) of Section 647.")

    40 Penal Code 653.23 PC - Supervising or otherwise aiding a prostitute. "(b) Among the circumstances that may be considered in determining whether a person is in violation of subdivision (a) are that the person does the following: . . .  (8) Has been convicted of violating this section, subdivision (a) or (b) of Section 647, subdivision (a) of Section 653.22, Section 266h, or 266i, or any other offense relating to or involving prostitution within five years of the arrest under this section. . . .")See also Penal Code 647 PC - Disorderly conduct. ("Except as provided in subdivision (l), every person who commits any of the following acts is guilty of disorderly conduct, a misdemeanor: . . .  (b) Who solicits or who agrees to engage in or who engages in any act of prostitution. A person agrees to engage in an act of prostitution when, with specific intent to so engage, he or she manifests an acceptance of an offer or solicitation to so engage, regardless of whether the offer or solicitation was made by a person who also possessed the specific intent to engage in prostitution. No agreement to engage in an act of prostitution shall constitute a violation of this subdivision unless some act, in addition to the agreement, is done within this state in furtherance of the commission of an act of prostitution by the person agreeing to engage in that act. As used in this subdivision, "prostitution" includes any lewd act between persons for money or other consideration. . . .")

    41 CALJIC 16.420 - Prostitution. ("In order to prove this crime, each of the following elements must be proved: [1] A person engaged in an act of prostitution; and [2] The person did so willfully.")

    See also CALJIC 1.20 - Willfully defined. ("The word 'willfully' when applied to the intent with which an act is done or omitted means with a purpose or willingness to commit the act or to make the omission in question. The word 'willfully' does not require any intent to violate the law, or to injure another, or to acquire any advantage.")

    42 CALJIC 16.420 - Prostitution. ("[1] A person solicited another person to engage in any act of prostitution; and [2] That person did so with the specific intent to engage in an act of prostitution.")

    43 Penal Code 653.23 PC - Supervising or otherwise aiding a prostitute.  ("(a) It is unlawful for any person to do either of the following: (1) Direct, supervise, recruit, or otherwise aid another person in the commission of a violation of . . . subdivision (a) of Section 653.22. . . .")

    See also Penal Code 653.22 PC - Loitering for the purpose of engaging in a prostitution offense.  ("(a) It is unlawful for any person to loiter in any public place with the intent to commit prostitution. This intent is evidenced by acting in a manner and under circumstances which openly demonstrate the purpose of inducing, enticing, or soliciting prostitution, or procuring another to commit prostitution.")

    44 CALJIC 16.455 - Loitering for Prostitution. ("In order to prove this crime, each of the following elements must be proved: 1. A person loitered in a public place; and 2. That person did so with the specific intent to commit prostitution.")

    See also Penal Code 653.20 PC - Definitions. ("(a) 'Commit prostitution' means to engage in sexual conduct for money or other consideration, but does not include sexual conduct engaged in as a part of any stage performance, play, or other entertainment open to the public. (b) 'Public place' means an area open to the public, or an alley, plaza, park, driveway, or parking lot, or an automobile, whether moving or not, or a building open to the general public, including one which serves food or drink, or provides entertainment, or the doorways and entrances to a building or dwelling, or the grounds enclosing a building or dwelling. (c) 'Loiter' means to delay or linger without a lawful purpose for being on the property and for the purpose of committing a crime as opportunity may be discovered.")

    45 Penal Code 653.26 PC - Violation is misdemeanor. ("A violation of any provision of this chapter is a misdemeanor.")

    46 Penal Code 653.23 PC - Supervising or otherwise aiding a prostitute. "(b) Among the circumstances that may be considered in determining whether a person is in violation of subdivision (a) are that the person does the following: . . .  (8) Has been convicted of violating this section, subdivision (a) or (b) of Section 647, subdivision (a) of Section 653.22, Section 266h, or 266i, or any other offense relating to or involving prostitution within five years of the arrest under this section. . . .")

    See also Penal Code 647 PC - Disorderly conduct. ("Except as provided in subdivision (l), every person who commits any of the following acts is guilty of disorderly conduct, a misdemeanor: (a) Who solicits anyone to engage in or who engages in lewd or dissolute conduct in any public place or in any place open to the public or exposed to public view. . . .")

    47 California Criminal Jury Instructions "CALCRIM" 1161.

    48 Penal Code 647 PC - Disorderly conduct.

    49 Penal Code 653.28 PC - Local laws; preemption. ("Nothing in this chapter or Chapter 2 (commencing with Section 639) shall prevent a local governing body from adopting and enforcing laws consistent with these chapters relating to prostitution or prostitution-related activity. Where local laws duplicate or supplement this chapter or Chapter 2 (commencing with Section 639), these chapters shall be construed as providing alternative remedies and not to preempt the field.")

    50Los Angeles Municipal Code 41.70 - Nuisance Vehicles - Prostitution. ("B. Abatement of Nuisance Vehicle by Seizure and Forfeiture. 1. Any vehicle used to solicit or to agree to engage in or to engage in an act of prostitution is declared a nuisance and the vehicle shall be enjoined and abated as provided in this section.  2. Any vehicle used to attempt to procure another person for the purposes of prostitution or to procure another person for the purposes of prostitution is declared a nuisance and the vehicle shall be enjoined and abated as provided in this section. 3. Any vehicle used to cause, induce, persuade or encourage, by promises, threats, violence, or by any device or scheme, another person to become a prostitute is declared a nuisance and the vehicle shall be enjoined and abated as provided in this section. 4. Any person or his or her servant, agent, or employee who owns, leases, conducts or maintains any vehicle used for any of the purposes or acts set forth in this section is responsible for creating a public nuisance.")

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