Italy: Cassation Court: Refusing to pay a sex worker is rape

PostDateIcon Thursday, 18 March 2010 16:23 | Print

If you agree to have sex with a sex worker in Italy and for some reason you change your mind and refuse to pay for the services received, you can be charged with rape.

The Cassation Court has upheld a sentence against a sex worker’s client who refused to pay for the sexual services received.

The man will serve a four year prison sentence in addition to paying the sex worker 2000 Euros in damages.

Ms. Pia Covre, President of the Committee for the Civil Rights of Prostitutes (CDCP) expressed satisfaction at the sentence. She said that having sex with a commercial worker without paying for the services received is equivalent to sexual violence.

The Cassation Court has now made it clear that the oral contract between a sex worker and a client must be respected because it is legally binding, Ms. Covre said.

She noted that the ruling is a step towards recognition of an activity which if carried out freely, should be recognized as legal work.

Ms. Covre said that for a long time, many clients of sex workers have been refusing to pay for their services, but it was difficult in the past to convince sex workers to report their clients to the police.

She appreciated the fact that sex workers are now reporting such cases to the police in order to seek justice. This is a sign that sex workers are increasingly becoming aware of their rights and are determined to make sure that they are not violated, Ms. Covre said.

By Stephen Ogongo

See original at Africa News

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