Pimping and pandering are 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.
These sex crimes are serious felony offenses under California's criminal laws.
They involve the illegal trafficking of other people for commercial sexual acts, which usually means exchanging money for sex, i.e., prostitution.
PC 266h pimping and PC 266i pandering are so closely connected that it is widespread for a defendant to be charged under both statutes. Still, under law, they are legally distinct and have different elements of the crime.
While these sex crimes may seem 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, suppose a defendant encourages through promises, threats, or violence or uses fraud or trickery to cause someone to be a prostitute. In that case, 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 to the customer, but they still expected 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 are the Related California Crimes?
As noted, pimping and pandering are 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 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. They have teams of vice officers in those areas, specifically in Sepulveda. The female officers are not just looking to catch people for soliciting prostitution anymore -- the so-called John's.
They're also looking to catch people 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 a 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 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 under the age of 18, that's another thing they slip in there.
The undercover female police officers who are 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 one has been caught on Sepulveda Boulevard for some 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, usually 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 policewoman.
So, that recording is now going to get put into play, and if they're asking you:
- whether or not you become involved in some 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.
It would help if you defended 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 was 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.