For Rape Defence Lawyers Melbourne
There have been many changes to the law of rape relevant to rape defence, the most recent amendment to the Crimes Act in effect from 1st July 2015.
What is rape? – In Victoria a person commits rape if he or she intentionally sexually penetrates another person without that person’s consent and does not reasonably believe that the other person is consenting.
If there is evidence of penetration, DNA evidence, or an admission in a record of interview for example, before the latest amendment the prosecution had to prove that the accused intentionally penetrated the complainant while being aware that the complainant was not or might not be consenting.
In 2008 the law was amended to provide an alternative namely that the accused had given no thought to whether or not the complainant was not or might not be consenting. This test applies to all offences of rape after December 2008.
For offences committed after the 1st July 2015 the law has been further amended as follows:
- Rape is the intentional sexual penetration of another person where there is no consent to the penetration and the accused person does not reasonably believe that the complainant consents to the penetration.
- It is thus necessary for the prosecution to prove the accused did not reasonably believe the complainant was consenting.
- The above demonstrates how important it is to seek early legal advice. What you say in a Record of Interview with police can be extremely important and before deciding what to do you are wise to seek advice. The circumstances of each case may be different and raise different issues to be considered. What is a “reasonable belief” will be determined by an objective standard not simply whether the accused person thinks his own belief is reasonable.
- It is also important to establish what law is applicable to historical allegations of sexual assault or rape.
- An allegation of Rape is a serious matter and should not be taken lightly. If you find yourself in the situation where someone is accusing you of rape, it is imperative that you seek legal advice immediately. As experienced criminal defence lawyers, Slades and Parsons have a team of highly qualified lawyers who specialise in all forms of criminal defence, including rape defence. We are available for both phone and face to face contact for urgent advice. A solicitor from Slades and Parsons will support you throughout the process ensuring that your rights are being upheld.
- Slades and Parsons Criminal Defence Law Firm have been providing quality and specialist legal advice representing clients in Melbourne and Victoria for over thirty five years. With this experience comes knowledge. You need to have rapport with your lawyer and know that you can trust him or her to defend your rights and liberty with conviction and perseverance.
- If you are to be interviewed by police or have been charged with rape then us at any time, 7 days a week for advice about rape defence from one of our criminal defence lawyers. We represent our clients both in Melbourne and country Victoria, Magistrates, County and Supreme Court trials.