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Entice Minor to Commit Prostitution
(PC 266)
Law, Punishment, & Defense

Information on the crime of Enticing or Seducing a Minor to Engage in Prostitution can be found at California penal code section 266 (PC 266). The following is a brief overview of the law and punishment related to penal code 266. For further information, contact our sex crimes criminal defense attorney today for a free consultation.


PC 266 Law

Per California law, "a person who inveigles or entices a minor into a house of ill fame, or of assignation, or elsewhere, for the purpose of prostitution, or to have illicit carnal connection with another person, and a person who aids or assists in that inveiglement or enticement, and a person who, by any false pretenses, false representation, or other fraudulent means, procures a person to have illicit carnal connection with another person, is…guilty of seduction of a minor for prostitution" (PC 266 Abbrev.).

In short, to find the defendant guilty of PC 266, the district attorney will need to prove: 1) the victim was a minor (under 18), 2) the defendant knew the victim was a minor, 3) the defendant enticed, encouraged, or otherwise aided the minor to work as a prostitute, or to work in a house of prostitution, regardless of payment to the victim.

PC 266 Legal Definitions

  • Inveigles: Inveigles means ‘persuading someone to do something by means of deception or flattery.’

  • Minor: Minor is defined as a person under the age of eighteen (18) [California]

  • Assignation: Assignation is defined as an appointment to meet someone in secret for sexual activity.

  • House of Ill Fame: House of Ill Fame is defined as a house of prostitution, brothel, bordello, bawdyhouse, cathouse, whorehouse, or other similar location where prostitution is conducted.

  • Prostitution: Prostitution is defined as the act or occupation of engaging in sexual services for payment (i.e., cash, goods, services, etc.). For further definition of prostitution, see PC 647(b).

  • Illicit Carnal Connection: Illicit Carnal Knowledge means sexual intercourse or sexual activity with another person (i.e., sexual intercourse, sodomy, oral copulation, sexual penetration with object, etc.).

Examples of PC 266

  • Enticing or persuading a minor to engage in prostitution,

  • Enticing or persuading a minor to work in a brothel, whorehouse, cathouse, or other similar house of prostitution,

  • Bring a person to engage in illicit carnal connection with a minor, regardless of payment,

  • Trick a minor into engaging in illicit carnal connection with another person, regardless of payment

PC 266 Penalties

Wobbler Offense: The crime of enticing or seducing a minor to engage in prostitution is classified as a “wobbler” offense in California. A “wobbler” offense is a crime that may be classified as either a misdemeanor, or alternatively as a felony.

Whether the district attorney charges a misdemeanor or felony offense in any particular PC 266 case depends on the defendant’s criminal history, the sophistication of the alleged offense, the presence of any aggravating sentencing factors, and more.

Felony Prison Sentence: A felony conviction of PC 266 may result in the defendant facing up to three years in a California state prison. A probation sentence may be imposed instead of a prison sentence in some cases.


Misdemeanor Jail Sentence: A misdemeanor conviction of PC 266 may result in the defendant facing up to one year in a local county jail. A probation sentence may be imposed instead of a jail sentence in some cases.

Probation Sentence: A probation sentence is a period of supervision instead of jail. A probation sentence is allowed, but not guaranteed, in PC 266 cases. Whether a probation sentence is granted, as opposed to a jail or prison sentence, depends on many factors, including the defendant’s criminal history and the circumstances of the case.

Note: A probation sentence includes “conditions of probation” that must be obeyed for the defendant to remain out of jail. If the defendant fails to perform the conditions of probation, then his probation may be “revoked,” and the defendant may be sentenced to jail thereafter.

Sex Offender Registration Requirement: The crime of inciting or persuading a minor to engage in prostitution is a crime for which sex offender registration is required. This means that if the defendant is convicted of PC 266, then he or she must register as a sex offender and the court has no leeway in this regard. For more information, including the length of sex offender registration after a penal code 266 conviction, see Sex Offender Registration Requirements & CA Tier System for Sex Offenders.

PC 266 Fines: The statutory fine related to PC 266 crimes is $2,000 dollars. This fine is in addition to any court security fee, and/or restitution that may be ordered against the defendant. This fine is also in addition to any fee associated with the use of the Public Defender’s services (if applicable).

Additional Penalties: In addition to the penalties listed above, if the defendant is found guilty of enticing a minor to engage in prostitution, the defendant could face any of the following punishments: civil lawsuit, loss of certain rights in family law court (adoption, conservatorship, child custody, child visitation, etc.), loss of a massage parlor license (if applicable), loss of firearm rights (felony cases), immigration and professional licensing consequences, and more.


PC 266 Defenses

Common Defenses: Common defense associated with PC 266 crimes include: statute of limitations, alibi, coerced confessions, insufficient evidence, entrapment, mistake of fact (as to the age of the victim), and more. For more information on common defenses to PC 266, see Defense Strategies in CA Sex Crimes.


If you have been criminal charged with a violation of PC 266 [Enticing a Minor to Engage in Prostitution], contact our experienced sex crimes criminal defense attorney today. Our dedicated team of criminal defense lawyers have helped hundreds of clients charged with misdemeanor and felony sex crimes in the Inland Empire and Los Angeles County. Call today!


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