For example it is an offence to control a prostitute for gain, or to keep a brothel.
Prostitution has a close affinity with a host of other important social issues, in particular crime, drugs, sexual equality, poverty and health.
The legal regulation of prostitution in the UK was set out in the Sexual Offences Act 1956, which reflected the findings of the Wolfenden Committee investigation into prostitution and homosexuality that took place around that time.
The Wolfenden Committee treated prostitution and its status in the law as a moral issue and this was reflected in the text of the Act.
For example, in 2002 the Government made a total of £850,000 available for groups working in a multi-agency context to implement local strategies for reducing prostitution-related crime and disorder.
Some argue that licensed brothels would help to ensure worker safety, keep them off the streets, help prevent health problems, bring revenue to the Treasury and remove the need for exploitative and abusive pimps. The murders of five prostitutes in Ipswich in November and December 2006 reignited calls for a new approach to tackling the issue.
Virtual imprisonment has become a particular problem in recent years, notably since the fall of the Iron Curtain and the break-up of Yugoslavia.
Many religious groups adopt this position, adding another aspect to the debate.In November 2008 the Home Office published the findings of a six month review into how the demand for prostitution could be reduced.Home Secretary Jacqui Smith, in a foreword to the review, stated: "So far, little attention has been focused on the sex buyer, the person responsible for creating the demand for prostitution markets. Prostitution describes the offering and provision of sexual services for financial gain.In the UK, prostitution itself is not illegal but there are a number of offences linked to it.This led to famous debates between Lord Devlin and the philosopher Herbert Hart.In late 2003 the Home Office announced its intention to review the laws on prostitution with the aim of overhauling the dated regulations of the 1956 Act.Subsequently amendments relating to prostitution were made under the Sexual Offences Act 2003 with regard to the following offences; "causing or inciting prostitution for gain", "controlling prostitution for gain", "penalties for keeping a brothel used for prostitution" and "extension of gender specific prostitution offences".The Policing and Crime Bill, introduced to the Commons in December 2008, created a new offence of paying for sex with someone who is controlled for gain and introduced new powers to close brothels; it also modified the law on soliciting. Controversies As with all matters of sexuality, prostitution continues to be debated on both social and moral levels.Section 46(1) of the Criminal Justice and Police Act 2001 creates an offence to place advertisements relating to prostitution on, or in the immediate vicinity of, a public telephone an advertisement relating to prostitution.Children under 18 involved in prostitution should be treated as victims of abuse.