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toomuch

Immoral Earnings And Equality Of The Sexes

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I looked up the law on "immoral earnings" recently, and was surprised to read that it only applies to men. While it's obvious how this has come about, it seems to make little sense today. Is it subject to challenge under equality laws?

Also, does this mean that for example acemassage.com, which has a London address, is run by women? Otherwise, why do they escape the net when sites like punternet have only continued because they're run from outside the UK?

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There isn't a law on 'immoral earnings' and there never has been. There used to be one pertaining to living off the earnings of a prostitute (which did only apply to men although there was a female equivalent one which I can't remember) but it was all superceded in May 2004 anyway when the SOA 2003 came into play, so it's irrelevant.

The advertising of sex for sale is not illegal in the UK, which is why such sites have continued irrespective of where they are based.

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There isn't a law on 'immoral earnings' and there never has been. There used to be one pertaining to living off the earnings of a prostitute (which did only apply to men although there was a female equivalent one which I can't remember) but it was all superceded in May 2004 anyway when the SOA 2003 came into play, so it's irrelevant.

This is the one I was referring to: S.30 Sexual Offences Act 1956:

http://www.rjerrard.co.uk/law/articles/livings.htm

So that's been superceded by the SOA 2003? I assume you're referring to the "controlling for gain" part?

Thanks for the correction. I wasn't so much interested in what exactly is prohibited as much as in the male/female discrimination of the wording, so I guess this answers my question.

The advertising of sex for sale is not illegal in the UK, which is why such sites have continued irrespective of where they are based.

If that's true, things have changed since the 56 act in that respect - there's a case there about "carding". How do we know if it's legal or not if it hasn't been tested in law? "Controlling for gain" does sound like a big stretch to apply to advertising, but stranger things happen in law, right?

Also, I recall a Labour minister trying - and failing - to get G extradited from the US on the basis of punternet's existence a few years ago? No doubt that was posturing, but I assume the 2003 act was what she had in mind.

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This is the one I was referring to: S.30 Sexual Offences Act 1956:

http://www.rjerrard....les/livings.htm

So that's been superceded by the SOA 2003? I assume you're referring to the "controlling for gain" part?

Thanks for the correction. I wasn't so much interested in what exactly is prohibited as much as in the male/female discrimination of the wording, so I guess this answers my question.

If that's true, things have changed since the 56 act in that respect - there's a case there about "carding". How do we know if it's legal or not if it hasn't been tested in law? "Controlling for gain" does sound like a big stretch to apply to advertising, but stranger things happen in law, right?

Also, I recall a Labour minister trying - and failing - to get G extradited from the US on the basis of punternet's existence a few years ago? No doubt that was posturing, but I assume the 2003 act was what she had in mind.

I seem to remember they simply wanted to try and shut the site down, that was all.

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I seem to remember they simply wanted to try and shut the site down, that was all.

If i recall correctly the Brits were going to talk to Arnie, then Governor of California, i never imagined anything would be done and of course the net result of Harriet Harridan mentioning this site was more people joining, she is such a competent politician. Brings a law in that our legal eagles can find not one single prosecution for, she must be so proud of it. ;)

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This is the one I was referring to: S.30 Sexual Offences Act 1956:

http://www.rjerrard....les/livings.htm

So that's been superceded by the SOA 2003? I assume you're referring to the "controlling for gain" part?

Thanks for the correction. I wasn't so much interested in what exactly is prohibited as much as in the male/female discrimination of the wording, so I guess this answers my question.

If that's true, things have changed since the 56 act in that respect - there's a case there about "carding". How do we know if it's legal or not if it hasn't been tested in law? "Controlling for gain" does sound like a big stretch to apply to advertising, but stranger things happen in law, right?

Also, I recall a Labour minister trying - and failing - to get G extradited from the US on the basis of punternet's existence a few years ago? No doubt that was posturing, but I assume the 2003 act was what she had in mind.

Carding is still illegal, assuming that the cards are near any public telephone (and this would apply to payphones in places like pubs too, if any still have them). The internet is not a public place.

Controlling for gain is nothing to do with advertising and concerns the direct procuring of a prostitute for a third party with the expectation of gain for the person doing the procuring - advertising resources have no direct control over our activities, and just provide a platform.

Harman was just blustering a load of crap for the press.

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Also, I recall a Labour minister trying - and failing - to get G extradited from the US on the basis of punternet's existence a few years ago? No doubt that was posturing, but I assume the 2003 act was what she had in mind.

The funniest thing about this was that G was relaxing in his luxury flat in Pimlico at the time, just yards from the House.

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......... I wasn't so much interested in what exactly is prohibited as much as in the male/female discrimination of the wording, so I guess this answers my question.

If that's true, things have changed since the 56 act in that respect.....

The Sexual Offences Act 2003 is gender neutral, and Schedule 1 of the Act made un-repealed provisions of the 1956 Act gender neutral as well.

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The Sexual Offences Act 2003 is gender neutral, and Schedule 1 of the Act made un-repealed provisions of the 1956 Act gender neutral as well.

Right. However, when I said "things have changed" (the part you're responding to, it seems), I was referring to advertising, not gender discrimination.

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The Sexual Offences Act 2003 is gender neutral, and Schedule 1 of the Act made un-repealed provisions of the 1956 Act gender neutral as well.

So which provisions of the 56 act are not repealed?

Edited to add: thanks for the info about making it gender-neutral.

Edited by toomuch

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The funniest thing about this was that G was relaxing in his luxury flat in Pimlico at the time, just yards from the House.

Excellent!

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Controlling for gain is nothing to do with advertising and concerns the direct procuring of a prostitute for a third party with the expectation of gain for the person doing the procuring - advertising resources have no direct control over our activities, and just provide a platform.

That is very plausible. But this is untested by case law, right? Do you disagree that laws not tested by actual cases are always a bit of a lottery? Even though it sounds implausible that it would apply to advertising, "controlling for gain" is just a very vague term.

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I seem to remember they simply wanted to try and shut the site down, that was all.

You are correct, thankyou.

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That is very plausible. But this is untested by case law, right? Do you disagree that laws not tested by actual cases are always a bit of a lottery? Even though it sounds implausible that it would apply to advertising, "controlling for gain" is just a very vague term.

I don't understand what you mean? Do you think that nobody in the UK has ever been prosecuted under the controlling prostitution for gain legislation, because that certainly isn't the case.

The legislation can cover anything from paying your friend to answer your phone and arrange bookings for you when you're busy to handing half your earnings over to an agency who advertises you on their website and arranges bookings with punters you never even get to speak to until you're at the door but it is concerned with somebody having a direct influence over your prostitution activities. The clue is in the specified 'Control'.

Just having an advert up does not count, since the owners of that website (or newspaper, magazine and so on) are not actually finding/arranging you individual bookings - they are just saying - 'this is how you find out about/contact WG A if you want to see her', not saying to Punter B that he can see WG C for an hour at 6 o'clock and this is how/where, if you see what I mean.

Edited by AdorableAmy

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So which provisions of the 56 act are not repealed?

Sections 33 to 36.

But this is untested by case law, right? Do you disagree that laws not tested by actual cases are always a bit of a lottery? Even though it sounds implausible that it would apply to advertising, "controlling for gain" is just a very vague term.

I don't agree with your assertion that statutes not tested in the courts are a bit of a lottery. There have been quite a few convictions under section 53 SOA 2003 (controlling prositution for gain). There have also been reported cases. Here's one - R v Massey [2007]:

http://www.bailii.or...&method=boolean

The Court of Appeal considered the meaning of the word "control" but didn't really come up with anything helpful or comprehensive.

Lord Justice Toulson: "In our judgment, "control" includes but is not limited to one who forces another to carry out the relevant activity. "Control" may be exercised in a variety of ways. It is not necessary or appropriate for us to seek to lay down a comprehensive definition of an ordinary English word. It is certainly enough if a defendant instructs or directs the other person to carry out the relevant activity or do it in a particular way."

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"In our judgment, "control" includes but is not limited to one who forces another to carry out the relevant activity. "Control" may be exercised in a variety of ways. It is not necessary or appropriate for us to seek to lay down a comprehensive definition of an ordinary English word. It is certainly enough if a defendant instructs or directs the other person to carry out the relevant activity or do it in a particular way."

During the '80s at the hight of the "freelance" culture in the Offshore Industry, many of us were laid off by our companies, pointed at agencies, then hired back on day rate. There was a rash of one-man companies being formed to tap into the tax advantages of ACT and directors pension schemes.

The drive to this tended to come from above and neither the guys or the operational management wanted to part and so we ended up doing most of our work for one client and in the same old way.

The revenue cracked down by applying various tests; the most telling beiing a - was an individual working " to procedure or instruction" and "with control over choice of tasks and worksites" and b - was there a demonstrated freedom to move between principals.

I suppose the same tests could determine "control" in the sex biz

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If that's true, things have changed since the 56 act in that respect - there's a case there about "carding". How do we know if it's legal or not if it hasn't been tested in law? "Controlling for gain" does sound like a big stretch to apply to advertising, but stranger things happen in law, right?

"Carding" is a specific offence. The following is extracted from CPS' in-house Legal Guidance to their own people, which is easily available at http://www.cps.gov.uk/legal/p_to_r/prostitution_and_exploitation_of_prostitution/ and very well worth reading, then bookmarking.

Prostitution - advertising

Placing of adverts in telephone boxes

Section 46(1) of the Criminal Justice and Police Act 2001 creates an offence to place advertisements relating to prostitution.

Under section 46(1) a person commits an offence if:

a) he places on, or in the immediate vicinity of, a public telephone an advertisement relating to prostitution, and

B)

he does so with the intention that the advertisement should come to the attention of any other person or persons.

Under section 46(3) any advertisement which a reasonable person would consider to be an advertisement relating to prostitution shall be presumed to be such an advertisement unless it is shown not to be.

'Public telephone' is defined in Section 46(5) as any telephone which is located in a public place and made available for use by the public. 'Public place' means any place to which the public have or are permitted to have access, whether on payment or otherwise. There are specific restrictions preventing the use of Section 46 where the advertisement is placed in a place to which children under 16 are not permitted to have access, whether by law or otherwise, or in any premises which are wholly or mainly used for residential purposes.

A person guilty of an offence under this section is liable on summary conviction to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 6 months or to a fine, or both (Stones Justices' Manual 2009 1-4142).

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I don't agree with your assertion that statutes not tested in the courts are a bit of a lottery.

Well, my level of confidence is I suppose conditioned by what seems to be the stock response to most questions when lawyers are interviewed in the press, being of the form "we haven't a clue, we're waiting for the case law to come in". Just as one example: looking for information on the applicability of data protection law the other day, it seems that, yep, who'd have thought it, the lawyers say it's all pretty murky because it hasn't been tested in the courts yet. I don't believe they're just covering their asses (even if that's what they think they're doing) - they genuinely don't know. How could they when legal wording is so often so unconstrained?

Do you really think that "controled" without further explanation is not amenable to widely different interpretations? Say, conservatively, on the one hand "person x is coerced", and on the other hand, that "person x is employed"? Then, it's small steps all the way from "employed" to "employed by an agency" to "directed by an agency" to "directed by a purple self-service website". Small steps alone but insane when added together to conclude that the first and the last are all instances of "controlled" - but that in itself gives me no confidence in itself that that could not be what is settled upon.

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"Carding" is a specific offence.

Thanks. The case in question predates that law and was under section 30 of the 1956 act.

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I don't agree with your assertion that statutes not tested in the courts are a bit of a lottery. There have been quite a few convictions under section 53 SOA 2003 (controlling prositution for gain). There have also been reported cases. Here's one - R v Massey [2007]:

Your first sentence and the following two here seem unconnected, except that they are in the same paragraph. If it's a lottery, nothing about that says that there would not be quite a few convictions, nor that there would be reported cases. The reason for that is that later cases try to follow the case law of earlier ones, as I'm sure you know better than me.

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Do you really think that "controled" without further explanation is not amenable to widely different interpretations? Say, conservatively, on the one hand "person x is coerced", and on the other hand, that "person x is employed"? Then, it's small steps all the way from "employed" to "employed by an agency" to "directed by an agency" to "directed by a purple self-service website". Small steps alone but insane when added together to conclude that the first and the last are all instances of "controlled" - but that in itself gives me no confidence in itself that that could not be what is settled upon.

As far as I'm concerned, your first 3 examples are more than capable of evidencing "control" within the meaning of section 53 SOA 2003. I don't believe that the last would be, as a website similar to the one to which you refer does not direct the advertisers to do anything.

Have you read the Massey judgment?

"In our judgment, "control" includes but is not limited to one who forces another to carry out the relevant activity. "Control" may be exercised in a variety of ways. It is not necessary or appropriate for us to seek to lay down a comprehensive definition of an ordinary English word. It is certainly enough if a defendant instructs or directs the other person to carry out the relevant activity or do it in a particular way. There may be a variety of reasons why the other person does as instructed. It may be because of physical violence or threats of violence. It may be because of emotional blackmail, for example, being told that "if you really loved me, you would do this for me". It may be because the defendant has a dominating personality and the woman who acts under his direction is psychologically damaged and fragile. It may be because the defendant is an older person, and the other person is emotionally immature. It may be because the defendant holds out the lure of gain, or the hope of a better life. Or there may be other reasons."

Do you really expect Parliament to include a comprehensive and definitive list of circumstances of "control" for the purposes of the section?

As the Court of Appeal said - ""Control" may be exercised in a variety of ways."

If a prostitute works voluntarily at a brothel then she's controlled. If she's coerced by traffickers and driven around to various premises then she's controlled.

It's for the jury to decide.The judge will by way of direction probably offer some guidance as to the meaning of "control" but otherwise I think that the jury are quite capable of deciding the point.

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Have you read the Massey judgment?

No. That's not relevant to your objection, which was:

I don't agree with your assertion that statutes not tested in the courts are a bit of a lottery.

Do you really expect Parliament to include a comprehensive and definitive list of circumstances of "control" for the purposes of the section?

No.

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