Have you been charged with the criminal law offence of rape? It's important to seek legal advice from an experienced lawyer as soon as possible. Learn more about this offence below.
s. 349 Rape (Criminal Code Queensland)
1) Any person who rapes another person is guilty of a crime. Maximum penalty: life imprisonment.
In Queensland, it is an offence to rape another person. A person may be charged with this offence if they have carnal knowledge with another person without their consent; if they penetrate the vulva, vagina or anus of another person with a part of their body which is not a penis without the person’s consent; or if they penetrate the mouth of another person with their penis without the person’s consent. These offences are not gender-sensitive, and thus can be in relation to a male or female victim.
In essence, a person may be charged with Rape if they commit a sexual act which penetrates the mouth, vulva, vagina or anus of another person without their consent.To be charged with Rape for penetrating the mouth of another person, the offender must have used their penis to penetrate the mouth of the victim. In relation to the penetration of the vulva, vagina or anus, the offender need not penetrate the victim with a penis, but with any part of their body.
A person will be charged with Rape if the penetration element is satisfied, and the victim did not consent to the penetration. A person has not received consent if they obtained it by force, threat or intimidation, exercising of authority, or by making false or fraudulent representations of the nature or purpose of the act. If a person is charged with raping a child under the age of 12, they will not be able to argue that the child consented. The law states that children under the age of 12 cannot consent to sexual intercourse or other sexual acts, even if they say that it is okay.
Rape offences are usually heard in the District Court. The maximum penalty for this offence is life imprisonment. A person who is convicted of Rape may be sentenced as a Serious Violent Offender, which means they must serve at least 80 per cent of their custodial sentence. This means that the offender will not be eligible for or released on parole until they have served 80 per cent of their term of imprisonment.
Are there any defences available to this charge?
Yes. The facts of your case will determine which defences will be available for you. The following defences may be available to you:
- Consent was given;
- Identity dispute;
- Honest and reasonable belief that complainant was consenting.
What should I do if the police want to speak to me about a rape allegation or if I am charged with Rape?
You have the right to remain silent. You DO have to provide the police with your name, date of birth and contact details. You should NOT answer any questions, make any statement or participate in any interview with the police. You should be polite to the officer but insist that you want to talk to your lawyer. You have the right to telephone a friend, relative or lawyer.
Call an Expert
If you are charged with a criminal offence, it is very important that you seek immediate legal advice. Our team at Brooke Winter Solicitors can give you over the phone advice. We have a solid reputation as expert Criminal Lawyers and can represent you in court.
Call us on 1300 066 669 if you have any questions. We can assist you no matter where you are located and can appear in every court.