The offence of sexual assault against a child is very serious. If you accused of sexual assault of a child under the age of 13, the Prosecution need to prove:
- That you have intentionally touched another person,
- That touching has a sexual motive or context, and
- That person is under the age of 13 years old
The offence of sexual assault against a child under the age of 13 years is an either-way offence, which means it can be heard in either the Magistrates or the Crown Court. It is such a serious and complicated allegation that any case that comes before the Court is virtually always dealt with by the Crown Court and the Magistrates sentencing powers would be insufficient. The maximum sentence that can be imposed is 14 years imprisonment.
Due to the age of a victim in an allegation like this, there is no defence of consent available. This is because anybody under the age of 13 years is not mentally or emotionally capable of understanding or consenting to any sexual contact.
Therefore, the issues that will have to be considered by a Court at trial are whether the alleged contact has occurred at all or whether the contact was sexual in its nature.
For an allegation like this, when it is necessary to cross examine a young witness, it is always important to ensure that an Advocate is sensitive to the fact that a jury could easily be alienated if the cross examination is too aggressive. It is also important to be sure that a Solicitor is aware of the key issues in dispute within the evidence so that the preparation of the case is specifically targeted to ensure the best possible approach to dealing with such a case.
If you are accused of any sexual offence there is a very real danger of receiving a prison sentence, and your entire life being damaged by the allegation. It is vital that you are represented by someone that you can trust, and who you are confident will do everything in their professional ability to put forward your case in a proper and appropriate manner to ensure that you get the best outcome possible in your circumstances.
We at Stephen Lickrish & Associates Solicitors understand that if you are accused of any sexual offence, it will be a very difficult time for you. We are proud of the professional level of support we offer to all clients who are accused of such offences. We make sure that you have an experienced solicitor that you can speak to at all stages of your case, and that you are represented in Court by a Barrister, or High Court Advocate, who is suitably experienced and qualified to present your case to the Court in the best way.
The Solicitors at Stephen Lickrish & Associates have dealt with clients who are accused of the full range of sexual offences. We act in a professional, discreet and diligent way, and do everything in our professional ability to secure the best outcome in each and every case. If you or someone you know are accused of a sexual offence, contact us to see how we can help you.
- Sexual assault by touching (13 or over)
- Sexual assault by touching (under 13)
- Inciting a minor to engage in sexual activity/grooming
- Possession of indecent images of minors
- Indecent exposure
- Sex Offenders Register
- Sexual Offences Prevention Order [SOPO]
- Police Station interviews
- Magistrates Court
- Crown Court