I just want to thank you from the bottom of my heart. My whole life I was thrown away, you made me feel like I did mean something. I could not have asked for a better lawyer. Your compassion and love for your job is inspiring. Your upfront and honesty were muchly appreciated, you are a beautiful person. Thank you for not giving up on me and thank you for all the work you put in. I wish you all the best for the future and I will be recommending you to everyone I know. You're amazing!!!!
I just wanted to thank you for representing me on Monday, I was overjoyed & relieved with the outcome. I don’t think it could have gone any better. All the best, I hope you got to celebrate this one instead after work, you forever made a difference in my life.
I know I thanked you before we parted company but please allow me to reiterate in writing my sincere deepest thanks for defending me in court today. … Armstrong Legal certainly has a great Lawyer you are a credit to the company and I'm quite sure you will secure a very successful future! … My Kindest Regards and Thanks
Throughout Angela has been the consummate professional. She maintained a calm, yet strong demeanour remained informative and completely open in her communication and took complete ownership of the situation. We felt confident we finally had an advocate to steer us out of the nightmare we were in, and she did so with great respect and sincerity. I cannot speak more highly of Angela. She has literally rescued our family from what looked very much like a hopeless future.
Words can’t describe how grateful I am to Trudie Cameron being my solicitor and to Andrew Tiedt presenting my case in the court. They both have been very supportive and amazingly professional and effective. I’ve got an absolutely fantastic outcome I couldn’t even dream about.
Soon after meeting Andrew I knew he was the solicitor I wanted to handle my matter. He immediately sprang into action which brought me stability and hope during a tumultuous time in my life. Andrew was never afraid to give me straight answers to my tough questions which is a true mark of integrity. He is clearly at ease in the court environment and I believe his calm and measured demeanour went a long way to helping me secure the best result from my day in court. I would certainly recommend you approach Andrew if you need assistance.
"Andrew Tiedt was very professional and considerate to personal circumstances and gave sound advice that resulted in the best outcome possible. Highly recommended."
The Age of Consent (Vic)
The laws about the age at which a young person can legally consent to sexual activity are different in each state and territory of Australia. In Victoria, like in most jurisdictions, the age of consent is currently 16. However, a person aged 16 or 17 cannot validly consent to sexual acts with a person who is in a position of authority over them, like a teacher or a sports coach.
Like many states, Victoria’s age of consent legislation contains has is sometimes called a Romeo and Juliette law. This is a law allowing consensual sex to occur between two young people who are similarly aged while criminalising sexual activity between an adult and a much younger person. The age of consent laws strive to balance the need for young people to be allowed to explore their developing sexuality and the need to protect children from being exploited and abused by older people.
What is consent?
Consent is defined in the Crimes Act as ‘free agreement’ (Section 36).
Any sexual activity without consent is a criminal offence regardless of the age of the participants. Criminal offences relating to sexual acts without consent in Victoria include rape and indecent assault.
The Crimes Act states that a person has not consented to sex if:
- They submit because of force or the fear of force;
- They submit because of the fear of harm of any type;
- They submit because they are unlawfully detained;
- They are asleep or unconscious;
- They are so intoxicated that they are incapable of consenting to the act;
What is the age of consent?
In Victoria, a person aged over 16 can validly consent to sex with any other person, except someone who is in in a position of authority over them. This means that the general age of consent in Victoria is 16.
A person who is aged between 12 and 16 can validly consent to sexual activity with a person who is not more than two years older than them
Persons aged 18 or older can validly consent to sex with a person who is in a position of authority over them. In this context, the age of consent is 18.
A person aged less than 12 cannot consent to sex with any other person.
Person in position of authority
It is an offence under Section 49C of the Crimes Act, for a person to engage in an act of sexual penetration with a child aged 16 or 17 who is under their care, supervision or authority. This offence can attract up to 10 years imprisonment.
Under Section 49E, it is an offence for a person in a position of care, supervision or authority to sexually touch a child. This offence can attract a term of up to 5 years imprisonment.
Persons who have care, supervision or authority over a child include the following:
- Parents and step-parents;
- Youth workers;
- Sports coaches;
- Religious leaders;
- Health professionals;
- Out of home carers;
- Police on duty;
It is a defence to a charge under these sections if the accused was validly married to the child at the time of the alleged act (Section 49Y).
Sexual offences against children below the age of consent
The seriousness of sexual offences against children is determined, among other things, by the age of the child allegedly involved.
Child under 12
It is an offence to engage in an act of sexual penetration with a child aged under 12. This offence attracts a maximum of 25 years imprisonment and has a standard sentence of 10 years imprisonment (Section 49A).
Child under 16
It is an offence to engage in an act of sexual penetration with a child aged under 16 (Section 49B). This offence is punishable by up to 15 years imprisonment and has a standard sentence of 6 years imprisonment.
It is a defence to a charge under Section 49B where:
- The accused was not more than two years older than the child and the child was aged over 12;
- The accused reasonably believed that the child was aged over 16 and the child was in fact aged over 12.
Sex Offenders Register
In 2004, the Victorian Sex Offenders Register was established. It is governed by the Sex Offenders Registration Act 2004. Persons who are found guilty of certain sex offences are required to register on the Sex Offenders Register so that police can keep track of their whereabouts and activities. The aim of this is to reduce the chance of convicted sex offenders reoffending.
Depending on the type of offences and the number of sex offences a person has committed, they can be required to stay listed on the Sex Offenders Register for 8 years, for 15 years, or permanently.
If you require legal advice or representation please contact Armstrong Legal.
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WHERE TO NEXT?
If you suspect that you may be under investigation, or if you have been charged with an offence, it is vital to get competent legal advice as early as possible. Our lawyers are highly specialised in criminal law and will be able to guide you through the process while dealing with the various authorities related to your matter.
WHY CHOOSE ARMSTRONG LEGAL?
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