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Prostitution and Solicitation in Chicago

The world’s oldest profession is still a crime, not just for the prostitutes themselves, but also their pimps and madams. Nevada is the only state where prostitution is legal, but the practice continues to thrive in Illinois despite its illegality. In Illinois, it is punishable as a Class A misdemeanor for both the sex worker and the customer. Soliciting a minor for sex is a Class 1 felony. Pimping or pandering is treated as a felony and usually carries a prison sentence of roughly three years, which is upgraded if the convicted pimp was offering the services of a minor.

Prosecutors often will offer plea deals or even immunity to sex workers who help law enforcement with the investigation of prostitution rings. Chicago criminal defense attorneys are best equipped to handle the finer points of a prostitution or solicitation charge. Chicago criminal defense attorneys can often assess your legal issue and help with developing a good defense strategy. You can find an attorney by viewing FindLaw's local directory of Chicago criminal defense attorneys.

Recently in Prostitution / Solicitation Category

On Wednesday a Cook County judge ordered that an alleged pimp be held on $1 million bail, the Chicago Tribune reports.

Prosecutors claim that 35-year-old DaJuan Brown used violence and drugs to keep around 12 young women working for him as prostitutes. Brown has prior convictions for pimping, domestic battery, and robbery.

On Thursday, Datqunn Sawyer, a notoriously brutal West Side pimp, was sentenced to 50 years in prison. The sentence is believed to be the toughest penalty Chicago’s federal court has ever handed down to a convicted sex trafficker, reports the Chicago Tribune.

According to prosecutors, Sawyer used physical violence and intimidation in order to coerce underage girls and vulnerable woman into working for him as prostitutes. A federal jury convicted him of sex trafficking charges in November.

Sex Trafficking in Chicago Nets Chicago Vice Lords

Several members of the Chicago Vice Lords and other gangs were arrested for sex trafficking in Chicago after an 18-month sting operation called “Operation Little Girl Lost.” The victims of the sex trafficking include girls as young as 12 who were forced to become prostitutes and beaten when they tried to leave.

Girls and women between the ages of 12 and 30 were recruited to become prostitutes in a complex homegrown operation that spanned Illinois, Indiana, and Wisconsin, reports the Chicago Sun-Times. Many of the victims were forced to sell their bodies for sex on a daily basis, often working 24-hour shifts, and then forced to give all of their earnings to their pimps. Those that didn’t cooperate, were beaten, whipped, threatened with death, and branded with tattoos as punishments.

Tyrelle Locket and Myrelle Locket Sentenced For Sex Trafficking

Tyrelle and Myrelle Locket, twin brothers from Dolton, pleaded guilty at the Markham courthouse to felony charges of human trafficking for forced services or labor. Chicago Breaking News reportes the pair, age 18, had forced young women into prostitution in the south suburbs and has now been sentenced to four years behind bars.

The Lockets were involved in making reservations at motels and photographing the female victims for internet ads they developed and posted online. The victims were also coerced to go into a motel room and have sex with men once the meetings with the clients were arranged. The brothers would then wait close by and collect payment afterward.

Walter Miller, 39, was charged with battering his girlfriend and forcing her into prostitution in suburban Stone Park, the Chicago Sun-Times reported. He was arrested after a complaint by his 30-year-old girlfriend prompted a joint investigation by the sheriff's office and the Cook County State's Attorney's office.

The woman, whose name has not been publicly disclosed, told police she began dating Walter Miller in January 2010. Unemployed, he allegedly forced her to prostitute herself because her job as a waitress reportedly didn't earn them enough money.

A coordinated undercover operation in Chicago and elsewhere in the country, led by Federal Bureau of Investigation agents, sought to shut down child prostitution rings, the Chicago Sun-Times reported. In the Chicago area, three underage girls working as prostitutes were treated as victims and taken into the custody of the Dept. of Children and Family Services.

They include a 17-year-old Downer's Grove girl, a 16-year-old Lansing girl and a 16-year-old South Holland girl.

Twin brothers from Dolton are charged with forcing teenage girls to have sex with strangers, taking the money for themselves and allegedly beating them, the Chicago Sun-Times reported. Brothers Myrelle and Tyrelle Lockett are being held in a medium-security division of the Cook County Jail on $100,000 bond each.

Each suspect was charged with trafficking in persons for forced labor of services, involuntary sexual servitude of a minor and involuntary servitude. All are felony charges.

Although you'd have to ask a Chicago criminal attorney, the young men likely will face severe sentences if found guilty.

13-Year-Old's Pimp Convicted

Despite the legitimate arguments in favor of the decriminalization of prostitution, including the health and safety interests of sex workers, young girls often are treated as slaves by their pimps. Really, how could anyone say that a 13-year-old prostitute is in charge of her career?

A prosecutor was quoted as saying that one particular 13-year-old was nothing more than "an easy product to sell" in the eyes of accused 18-year-old pimp Josue Gomez (Daily Herald).

Gomez was found guilty (NBC, Rockford) on a charge of juvenile pimping last week. He faces between four and 15 years in the slammer, according to the article.

Prostitution Sting Snares Seven

Five women, one man and one transgendered individual were arrested last week for sexual solicitation (Tribune) by Aurora detectives at a hotel on the west side. The detectives aimed their sting operation at suspected prostitution services advertised online, most notably the "erotic services" section of Craigslist.