Canadian Criminal Law/Offences/Solicitation

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s. 213 of the Crim. Code
Election / Plea
Crown Election Summary
Summary Dispositions
Avail. Disp. Discharge (730)

Suspended Sentence (731(1)(a))
Fine (734)
Fine + Probation (731(1)(b))
Jail (718.3, 787)
Jail + Probation (731(1)(b))
Jail + Fine (734)

Conditional Sentence (742.1)
Maximum 6 months jail or $5,000 fine
Offence Elements
Sentence Principles
Sentence Digests

Legislation[edit | edit source]

Offence in relation to prostitution
213. (1) Every person who in a public place or in any place open to public view

(a) stops or attempts to stop any motor vehicle,
(b) impedes the free flow of pedestrian or vehicular traffic or ingress to or egress from premises adjacent to that place, or
(c) stops or attempts to stop any person or in any manner communicates or attempts to communicate with any person

for the purpose of engaging in prostitution or of obtaining the sexual services of a prostitute is guilty of an offence punishable on summary conviction.

Definition of “public place”
(2) In this section, “public place” includes any place to which the public have access as of right or by invitation, express or implied, and any motor vehicle located in a public place or in any place open to public view.


Proof of Offence[edit | edit source]

213 (1)(c)[1]

  1. identity of accused
  2. date and time of incident
  3. jurisdiction (incl. region and province)
  4. stop, attempt to stop, communicate, or attempt to communicate with any person;[2]
  5. do so in a public place or in any place open to public view;
  6. do so for purpose or engaging in prostitution or obtaining sexual services.[3]

  1. R. v. McLaughlin, 1992 Carswell Alta 628 at 14
  2. R. v. Head 1987 CanLII 2823 (BC C.A.), (1987), 36 C.C.C. (3d) 562 (B.C.C.A.) [1]
  3. R. v. Pake, (1995), 103 C.C.C. (3d) 524 at p. 529 (Alta. C.A.)

Interpretation[edit | edit source]

197. (1) In this Part,


“prostitute” means a person of either sex who engages in prostitution;



There is no requirement that specific sexual services or money to be paid be mentioned. Context is inferred from the context of the communication: [1]

There is no requirement in law for an actual agreement to be reached between the prostitute and the customer. Shopping for sex may constitute an offence. [2]

It is not enough to prove that there was a conversation which dealt with sexual services of a prostitute. It cannot be simply for a collateral purpose. [3] The prohibited purpose must be proven beyond a reasonable doubt.[4]

It must be established that the accused had an intention to engage in prostitution or to obtain the sexual services of a prostitute; this intention may be inferred from the circumstances. The court looks at the intent at the time of the conversation.[5]

Communication for a collateral or indirect purpose (such as a prostitute stopping a taxi to ask for transportation to a well-known downtown location or a prostitute asking a pharmacist for a package of condoms) does not constitute the prohibited purpose.[6]

The offence is complete at the time of the communication occurs assuming there is the requisite intent.[7]

  1. R. v. Lawrence 2002 ABPC 189 at para. 19 [2]
  2. R. v. Searle (1994), 163 N.B.R. (2d) 123 at para. 21 (N.B. Prov. Ct.);
    R. v. Lawrence, supra at para. 19.
  3. R. v. Khalil, 2012 ABPC 93 at 75
  4. R v. McLaughlin, 1992 Carswell Alta 628 at 16
  5. R. v. Pake, (1995), 103 C.C.C. (3d) 524 at p. 529 (Alta. C.A.) ibid at pp. 530-31.
  6. R. v Wasylyshyn, [1988] B.C.J. No. 3210 at para. 8 (Co. Ct.) (QL); R. v. Lawrence, supra at para. 20.
  7. R. v. Pake, (1995) 103 CCC (3d) 524 (ABCA), Foisy, J.A., at pp. 530-531

See Also[edit | edit source]