PENAL CODE (AMENDMENT) (SEXUAL OFFENCES) BILL 2016 PASSED

Inside the National Parliament. Photo credit: National Parliament of Solomon Islands.

Inside the National Parliament. Photo credit: National Parliament of Solomon Islands.

A new bill to amend the Penal Code in relation to sexual offences to provide greater protection against sexual violence and exploitation has passed through the Bills and Legislation Committee and now taken to Parliament.

The Penal Code (Amendment) (Sexual Offences) Bill 2016 aims to update current offence in the Penal Code by providing clear definitions and capture a greater range of criminal acts of sexual nature.

It also increases the penalties for serious offences, particularly those involving young children.

The provisions are gender neutral and apply equally to acts committed to men and women.

The National Parliament, on its web page, says the updated offences include rape, attempted rape, incest, indecent assault, indecent Act, Sexual intercourse with a child and procuration.

In addition, the bill introduces new offences such as sexual intercourse with a person with a disability, Commercial child sexual exploitation and others.

The National Parliament passed the bill through its first reading in Parliament last Monday.

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