Pimping and pandering is being charged all over the place on the infamous Sepulveda Boulevard in San Fernando Valley, California.
The crime of “pimping” is defined under penal Code 266h PC as receiving all or part of the proceeds of someone's work as a prostitute.
The crime of “pandering” is defined under Penal Code 266i PC as encouraging another individual to either become or remain a prostitute.
Both of these sex crimes are serious felony offenses under California's criminal laws.
They involve the illegal trafficking of other people for purposes of commercial sexual acts, which of course normally means the exchange of money for sex, i.e. prostitution.
PC 266h pimping and PC 266i pandering are so closely connected that it is very common for a defendant to be charged under both statutes, but under law, they are legally distinct and have different elements of the crime.
While these sex crimes may seem like the same, there are some primary differences between pimping and pandering.
Pimping charges deal with someone receiving the earnings of a prostitute, while pandering charges deal with someone persuading another individual to either become, or remain, a prostitute.
For example, if a defendant encourages through promises, threats, or violence, or uses fraud or trickery to cause someone to be a prostitute, they could be found guilty of PC 266i pandering.
In the classic situation, a “pimp” will receive a portion of a prostitute's payment from their customers for sex, commonly called a “john.”
Typically, the pimp didn't provide the prostitute the customer, but they still expect to receive some money from the transaction for providing management and protection.
Readers should note that while most of California's sex crime statutes are “wobblers” that can be charged as a misdemeanor or a felony, pimping and pandering are straight felony crimes with harsh penalties.
Our California sex crime defense lawyers will review more closely below to give you a better understanding.
What the Related California Crimes?
As noted, pimping and pandering are a straight felony crime under California law that carries a maximum penalty of 6 years in state prison plus fines and fees.
These charges can't be reduced to a misdemeanor. If the victim is a minor under 18 years old, the punishment increases to 8 years in prison.
There are numerous California related sex crimes for pimping and pandering:
- Penal Code 653.23 PC - Supervising or aiding a prostitute,
- Penal Code 653.22 PC – Loitering for prostitution,
- Penal Code 647(a) PC – Lewd acts in public,
- Penal Code 647(b) PC – Solicitation of prostitution,
- Penal Code 236.1 PC – Human trafficking.
Police Undercover Officers Target of Sepulveda Blvd
I don't understand how people don't realize that the police have targeted Sepulveda and even Figueroa in downtown Los Angeles as high sex-crime areas.
They've got undercover female police officers plus they have teams of vice officers in those areas, specifically in Sepulveda and the female officers are not just looking to catch people for soliciting for prostitution anymore -- the so-called John's.
They're also looking to catch people who are trying to take advantage of women and use them as ways to make money.
So, they start talking to the John's, saying do you think you can help me make money? Do you think you can protect me?
They're trying to lure individuals into getting caught for solicitation of prostitution -- not just prostitution but also into being pimps and people are taking them up on it.
Guys are saying, yeah well charge a smaller percentage. Yeah, I'll protect you. Yeah, I'll drive you there.
What are the Penalties if Convicted?
This is pimping and pandering activity. For a pimping and pandering charge from Sepulveda Boulevard, you're looking at a minimum of three years in prison.
If you have any type of prior sex-related offenses, they're going to want to put you in prison for a long time. And if you're dealing with somebody who is under the age of 18, that's another thing they slip in there.
The undercover female police officers who are definitely not under 18 are saying they're under 18 and now you've got not just pimping and pandering, you're going to be charged with sex trafficking which brings double and triple the sentences.
Retain a Defense Lawyer
So, the bottom line is this, if you or a loved has been caught on Sepulveda Boulevard for some sort of pimping and pandering charge, you need to immediately get a defense attorney like me who's been dealing with these cases for almost 30 years.
I've worked for the District Attorney's office. I've worked for a Superior Court Judge and then since 1994, I've been defending people just like you charged with pimping and pandering on Sepulveda Boulevard.
More and more they're trying to upgrade these crimes. Once again, sometimes people are not even thinking about pimping out a girl.
They're just trying to hook-up with a girl, normally would be a misdemeanor solicitation case and it gets upgraded to a felony pimping and pandering case.
Defending Pimping and Pandering Cases
Entrapment can sometimes be the defense, but it depends on what you say. Another big thing they're doing now, they're recording the conversations between you and the undercover police woman.
So, that recording is now going to get put into play and if their asking you:
- whether or not you become involved in some sort of pimping and pandering arrangement,
- whether you drive them for money,
- you're taking a percentage of the money,
- you're going to protect them.
They're going to use that against you in a prosecution for pimping and pandering. They're going to try to put you in prison. They're going to try to make you register as a sex offender for the rest of your life.
You need to defend yourself. Sometimes I can mitigate these cases down. Sometimes I can show the prosecutors are going too far. My client had no intent to pimp or pander. All my client was trying to do is a misdemeanor crime.
Pick up the phone now. Make the call. Get somebody on your team who's been doing it for nearly 30 years and who has the experience to put you in the best possible position.
Hedding Law Firm is based in Los Angeles County and we offer a free case consultation.