Big fines for prostitute customers approved in CO

DENVER — A bill tacking on much bigger penalties for soliciting a prostitute has won initial backing in the Colorado Senate.

Lawmakers supported the change today with no debate.

The measure adds a minimum $5,000 fine for the crime of buying sex, up to a maximum of $10,000. The money would go to so-called “john schools” to teach men about human trafficking.

Anti-prostitution advocates say Colorado should raise fines, which are usually levied by cities and can be as low as $75. That’s less than littering in some cases.

The higher fines would be used for scared straight-type programs for johns. John schools are in place in several large cities and have been credited for reducing recidivism, though no Colorado city currently has a john school.

The bill faces a more formal Senate vote before it can move to the House.


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