What is Coercive Prostitution according to Spanish Law?
In Spain, prostitution is in a sort of grey area legally speaking and somehow lawless in many regards, but coercive prostitution and trafficking are clearly regulated and punishable. Coercive prostitution can be defined as the crime committed by whoever, that using violence, intimidation or deceit, or abusing a situation of superiority or need or vulnerability of the victim, determines a person of legal age to practice or remain in prostitution. Regarding Coercive prostitution Article 187 of the Spanish Penal Code establishes the following:
1. Whoever, using violence, intimidation or deceit, or abusing a situation of superiority or need or vulnerability of the victim, determines a person of legal age to practice or remain in prostitution, will be punished with prison sentences from two to five years and a fine of twelve to twenty-four months. A prison sentence of two to four years and a fine of twelve to twenty-four months will be imposed on anyone who profits by exploiting the prostitution of another person, even with their consent. In any case, it will be understood that there is exploitation when any of the following circumstances occur:
a) That the victim is in a situation of personal or economic vulnerability.
b) That burdensome, disproportionate or abusive conditions are imposed for its exercise.
2. The penalties provided for in the preceding sections will be imposed in their upper half, in their respective cases, when any of the following circumstances occur:
a) When the culprit has taken advantage of his or her authority, agent or public official. In this case, the penalty of absolute disqualification from six to twelve years will also be applied.
b) When the culprit belongs to an organization or criminal group that is dedicated to carrying out such activities.
c) When the culprit has endangered, intentionally or through serious negligence, the life or health of the victim.
3. The indicated penalties will be imposed in their respective cases without prejudice to those that correspond for the assaults or sexual abuse committed on the prostituted person.