Rethinking Wolfenden: Prostitute-Use, Criminal Law, and Remote Harm

Criminal Law Review, pp. 444-455, 2005

12 Pages Posted: 7 Apr 2005

Abstract

This article critiques the Wolfenden Committee's conclusion that criminalising prostitute-use is inconsistent with the liberal harm principle. Section one evaluates recent empirical evidence challenging Wolfenden's assumptions regarding prostitution. Section two analyses the use of forced-prostitutes as a direct harm offence of rape. Section three presents a new approach to criminalising the conduct of prostitute-users, and sketches a prima facie case in favour of criminalising solicitation for prostitute-use as an abstract endangerment offence.

Keywords: Criminal law, prostitution, harm principle, endangerment, Wolfenden, consent, fair imputation

JEL Classification: K14, K42, K49

Suggested Citation

Dempsey, Michelle Madden, Rethinking Wolfenden: Prostitute-Use, Criminal Law, and Remote Harm. Criminal Law Review, pp. 444-455, 2005. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=696162

Michelle Madden Dempsey (Contact Author)

Villanova University School of Law ( email )

299 N. Spring Mill Road
Villanova, PA 19085
United States

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