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New York Solicitation Lawyer

Solicitation is a criminal offense in New York that involves asking or encouraging another person to engage in illegal conduct. In the context of sexual crimes, solicitation is the act of asking or encouraging someone to engage in prostitution or some other form of sexual conduct in exchange for payment or other compensation. While criminal solicitation is not serious crime. If you are convicted of solicitation, you will end up with a criminal record. If you are accused of the crime of solicitation, contact an experienced New York solicitation lawyer at Stephen Bilkis & Associates. With over 20 years of experience, we can help you navigate the criminal justice system and protect your rights.

Crime of Solicitation

Under New York Penal Law, solicitation is defined in § 230.00 as the act of offering or agreeing to pay a fee to another person with the understanding that in return therefor such person or a third person will engage in sexual conduct; or solicits or requests another person to engage in sexual conduct with the actor in return for a fee.

Solicitation is a Class A Misdemeanor in New York, punishable by up to one year in jail and a fine of up to $1,000. In addition to these criminal penalties, a conviction for solicitation can have a number of other consequences, such as a criminal record, difficulty finding employment, and damage to personal and professional relationships.

As an experienced New York solicitation lawyer will explain, it is not necessary for the solicited individual to actually engage in prostitution for a person to be charged with solicitation. Merely offering or agreeing to pay for sexual conduct is sufficient to support a charge of solicitation.

The crime of solicitation is often associated with other offenses, such as prostitution and human trafficking. In some cases, a person may be charged with both solicitation and the underlying crime of prostitution, which carries its own penalties.


There are several possible defenses that an experienced solicitation attorney in New York may raise on behalf of a defendant, including entrapment, lack of intent, and mistake of fact.

Entrapment. Entrapment occurs when law enforcement officials induce a person to commit a crime that they would not have committed otherwise. If a defendant can show that they were entrapped into committing the crime of solicitation, the charges against them may be dismissed.

Lack of intent. In order to be convicted of solicitation, the prosecution must prove that the defendant intended to engage in illegal conduct. If the defendant can show that they did not have this intent, the charges against them may be dismissed.

Mistake of Fact. A mistake of fact defense is based on the idea that the defendant lacked the necessary intent to commit the crime because they were operating under a mistaken belief about the facts of the situation. For example, if a defendant mistakenly believed that the person they were soliciting was an adult when in fact they were a minor, the charges against them may be dismissed.

Notable New York Solicitation Cases
  • People v. Jackson, 82 N.Y.2d at 921 (1993) – In this case the defendant was convicted of solicitation for agreeing to pay a person for a sexual act. The court held that the defendant's agreement to pay for the act constituted a request for the act, which was sufficient to support a conviction for solicitation.
  • People v. Goodrich, 70 N.Y.2d 901 (1987) – In this case the defendant was charged with soliciting a police officer who was posing as a prostitute. The defendant argued that he was entrapped, but the court held that the defendant's actions in offering money for a sexual act constituted solicitation and that the defense of entrapment was not available.
Contact Stephen Bilkis & Associates

If you or someone you know has been charged with solicitation, it is important to consult with an experienced solicitation attorney serving New York who can help you understand the charges against you and develop a strong defense. Contact Stephen Bilkis & Associates at 1-800-NY-NY-LAW (1-800-696-9529) to schedule a free, no obligation consultation regarding your case. We represent clients in Manhattan, Bronx, Brooklyn, Long Island, Nassau County, Queens, Staten Island, Suffolk County, Westchester County, and Suffolk County.