Sexual Offences Act 2003 Essay

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The Sexual Offences Act 2003 (SOA 2003) extensively alters the legal regulatory framework concerning both rape and sexual assault. It does this in three ways: firstly, the SOA 2003 is underpinned by a more ‘subjectivist’ or ‘constructionist’ approach to sexual offending that moves away from defining sexual offences as particular acts; secondly, the SOA 2003 ‘gender neutralizes’ sexual offences; thirdly, it dramatically increases the levels of punishment for sexual offences almost across the board’; and, fourthly, it changes the way in which the law is to be implemented in the courts by shifting the notion of harm that underpins sexual offences as well as defining ‘consent’ . In terms of more particular matters, the SOA 2003 consolidates all possible sexual offences under a rubric of three main offences .

The Sexual Offenses Act (SOA) 2003 supplanted more seasoned sexual offenses legislation and made new offenses, including ambush by penetration. Section 1 of the SOA gives the present meaning
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Section 74 states: 'a man consents on the off chance that he concurs by choice, and has the freedom and capacity to settle on that choice'. Essentially, a complainant is under no legitimate commitment to explicitly flag her non—consent. The Home Office at the time inferred that this definition was 'clear and unambiguous' and a noteworthy change on the past normal law. Nonetheless, inquire about with counterfeit hearers unmistakably shows that the definition is not promptly understood. As noted by Temkin and Ashworth , the words "freedom" and "capacity" 'raise philosophical issues of such intricacy as to be not well—suited to the necessities of criminal equity', and counsellors working in the field of assault remarked that while the definition vas flawlessly reasonable from a legal advisor's point of view, they questioned the degree to which it was understandable to jury

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