A more recent version of these Sexual Offences notes – written by Cambridge/Bpp/College Of Law students – is available here.
The following is a more accessble plain text extract of the PDF sample above, taken from our GDL Criminal Law Notes. Due to the challenges of extracting text from PDFs, it will have odd formatting:
Criminal: Sexual Offences Introduction - Sexual Offences Act 2003
- Sexual Offences Act 2003: came into force 1 May 2004. radical reform: repeals almost all old law on sexual offences; new offences created; old offences redefined + extended. old law inadequate: 'archaic, incoherent and discriminatory' - [David Blunkett] in 2002 White Paper Protecting the Public. reasons: modernize law; lay down clear, coherent framework; make offences gender-neutral.
+ public concern: low conviction rate for rape. relatively untested: statutory interpretation needed for many areas.
- Problem: low conviction rate for rape - difficult to prove. conviction rate for reported cases: 1977 - 32%; 2002 - 5.6%; 2010 - 19%. many cases dropped before trial: by complainant, by CPS. conviction rate for cases going to trial: 2002 - 21%; 2010 - 71%. but still difficult to prove: forensic ev. can prove sex but not lack of consent; often complainant + defendant have past sexual history.
Rape - s1 Sexual Offences Act 2003
- Penetration of vagina, anus or mouth with a penis.
penetration: s79(2): 'continuing act from entry to withdrawal' ? consent given at time of entry can be withdrawn, person penetrating liable if penetration continues. slightest degree sufficient: s79(9): vagina inc. vulva. penile: penetration with any other part of body or object NOT rape - may be covered by assault by penetration (s2). inc. surgically constructed penis: s79(3). who may be liable?: 'a person'. man: clearly liable if all elements satisfied. woman: generally NOT guilty of rape if forces man to have sex with her (instead: s3 or s4). but: may be accessory to rape (DPP v K and B ). husband liable for raping wife: R v R  - previously: consent by marriage. transsexuals: s79(3) - penis inc. surgically constructed penis. victim: 'person' - can be man, woman or s79(3): transsexual.
- Absence of consent: under definition (s74) or statutory presumptions against consent (s75 + s76).
a. s74: definition: new law - previously undefined: R v Olugboja . agreement by choice: positive agreement not just lack of protest/resistance. R v Larter : victim apparently asleep ? still rape: lack of protest insufficient. R v Malone : victim intoxicated - did not consent. freedom to make the choice: i.e. not under threat of violence. range of threats unclear: R v Olugboja : not limited to force, fear or fraud (old).
Buy the full version of these notes or essay plans and more in our GDL Criminal Law Notes.