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Indecent Assault

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What is Indecent Assault

Indecent Assault is contained in section 61L Crimes Act 1900. It carries a maximum penalty of 5 years imprisonment.

For an assault to be an indecent one there needs to be a sexual connotation or association to it. If there is no overt sexual connotation, then it needs to be proved that the assault was intended to gain sexual gratification.

To be found guilty of an indecent assault it needs to be proven that:

  • There was an assault.
  • That the assault was indecent
  • That the assault was without consent
  • That the accused knew there was no consent or was reckless as to consent.

What is Aggravated Indecent Assault

 Aggravated Indecent Assault is housed in section 61M and depending on the circumstances of aggravation, can carry a maximum period of either 7 or 10 years.

Circumstances of Aggravation here are defined as:

  • the accused is in the company of another person or persons
  • the victim is under the age of 16 years
  • the victim is (whether generally or at the time of the commission of the offence) under the authority of the accused
  • the victim has a serious physical disability
  • the victim has a cognitive impairment

What is an act of indecency

Act of Indecency is contained in section 61N Crimes Act 1900. It is an indecent/sexual act done towards someone. For this offence to be made there does not need to be any physical touching between the accused and the victim. It is different to an indecent assault because of there does not need to be any touching or assault, the act merely needs to be in the presence of the victim.

It is also an offence to incite someone else to commit an indecent act.

If the victim is 16 years or older the maximum penalty is 18 months imprisonment. If the victim is under 16 years of age the maximum penalty is 2 years imprisonment.

What do if charged with indecent assault or act of indecency?

It is critical that you speak to a specialist criminal lawyer  before speaking with police. Offences of a sexual nature are extremely serious and can mean terms of full time imprisonment if you are found guilty.