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Customers of Sex Workers Can’t be Prosecuted: Andhra Pradesh HC After Hearing Plea of Accused in Brothel Raid

File image for representation only.

File image for representation only.

The petitioner was made one of the accused in the case registered by Nagarampalam police after conducting raids on a brothel house in 2020. He was held by the police as a customer and charges were framed against him

While hearing a matter relating to a man who was made one of the accused in a case registered by Nagarampalam police after conducting raids on a brothel house in 2020, the Andhra Pradesh High Court held that a customer of sex workers is not liable for prosecution.

The petitioner, who had moved the high court challenging the proceedings against him before the special first class judicial magistrate mobile, argued that the law is settled earlier in such matters where the AP high court and also the Karnataka high court passed judgments mentioning the same, the Times of India reported.

The petitioner, Ch Raj Kumar, was made one of the accused in the case registered by Nagarampalam police after conducting raids on a brothel house in 2020. Raj Kumar was held by the police as a customer and charges were framed against him.

Telling the court that there have been judgements in similar matters where the law settled that the customer who visited the brothel house by paying money cannot be prosecuted, petitoner’s lawyer said continuing proceedings against the him would be illegal and abuse of the process of courts.

While opposing the petition, additional public prosecutor for the government submitted that the petitioner is merely a customer and the said matter has been covered in an earlier common order.

Considering the arguments, Justice D Ramesh allowed the petition on the basis of the earlier precedence set by the Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka high courts, allowed the criminal petition and quashed the proceedings against the petitioner.

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first published:May 03, 2022, 12:53 IST