Sexual offences are not only serious in nature but also come with some specific issues when it comes to defence. Firstly, there is a social stigma attached to those accused of such an offence. This stigma can lead to a loss of employment, the tarnishing of one’s reputation, and even family problems. What is truly terrifying is that these outcomes are often based solely on the accusation itself, well before any judgement has been rendered. As such, it is important to retain a lawyer as soon as possible after such a claim is made to best defend your rights. The second issue is the strict evidentiary rules regarding such offences. In short, a lot of evidence that one would assume is admissible, is in fact inadmissible. As such, a strong defensive strategy is required from the outset of the claim to help counter the limitations placed on evidence.
- Sexual Assault – The intentional application of force that is sexual in nature. This includes any unwanted touching of a sexual nature. “Sexual nature” is based on whether a reasonable person, considering all the circumstances, would say the assault was sexual. Sexual gratification of the one charged with sexual assault is not a necessary component of this crime.
- Aggravated Sexual Assault – Aggravated sexual assault is when a person, while committing a sexual assault, wounds, maims, disfigures, or in any way endangers the life of the complainant.
- Sexual Interference – The touching, directly or indirectly, with a part of the body or with an object, any part of the body of a person under the age of 16 years for a sexual purpose.