‘Kerb crawlers’ trying to pick up prostitutes are being warned that they could face disqualification from driving in addition to any other sentence that a court can impose.

The Lord Advocate’s Guidelines to Chief Constables on prostitution related offences have been reviewed as part of an ongoing exercise to ensure all prosecution instructions to the police are effective and fit for purpose.

The Guidelines are intended to provide guidance to the police on the available enforcement options. They will also prescribe minimum enforcement criteria and form the basis of local enforcement strategies agreed between the police and Procurator Fiscal.

They are in two parts, to distinguish between offences committed by ‘purchasers’ and offences committed by ‘sellers’.

The ‘Prostitution (Public Places) Scotland Act 2007’ “criminalises the act of a purchaser who attempts to engage in prostitution” and ‘Section 46 of The Civic Government (Scotland) Act 1982’ “criminalises the act of an individual who for the purposes of prostitution loiters or solicits in a public place.”

Kerb crawlers can lose their licence in terms of the Prostitution (Public Places) Scotland Act 2007 (Disqualification from Driving) Order 2011.

The Order makes provision for a person who has been convicted of a relevant offence to be disqualified from driving where the court is satisfied that the accused was either driving or in charge of a motor vehicle at the time of committing the offence.