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Sexual Assault By Compelling Sexual Touching

In Victoria, section 41 of the Crimes Act 1958 is Sexual Assault by Compelling Sexual Touching, which is physically forcing another to sexually touch them or a third person.

Do the Police want to speak with you about an allegation of Sexual Assault by Compelling Sexual Touching? Do not speak to the Police until you have spoken to one of our experienced lawyers.

Sexual Assault By Compelling Sexual Touching
Police interview for Sexual Assault By Compelling Sexual Touching
It is very important that you talk to us before you are interviewed. Understanding whether you should talk to or not depends on your own specific circumstances. There are many ways you might respond.

Anything you tell the Police might make running a defence more difficult.

Our lawyers can also attend the Police station with you and sit in on a Police interview to make sure that you are guided not to say anything that may harm your defence.

Pleading not guilty
Our lawyers are experts in running jury trials for offences such as Sexual Assault by Compelling Sexual Touching.

You need a lawyer who is going to be pro-active and who will not just rely on the Police to investigate the matter.

You want a lawyer to ask the Police – what evidence is there other than the statement of the accuser? Is there exonerating evidence? Is there evidence which needs to be protected? Have the Police done a complete investigation?

Pleading guilty
We can help you if you are pleading guilty to Sexual Assault by Compelling Sexual Touching.

We have achieved great outcomes for clients in the past because we value preparation and do not leave things to chance. Our lawyers specialise in Court appearance work and know what works.

  • Contact an expert in charges of Sexual Assault by Compelling Sexual Touching on (03) 9670 5111.
  • We provide a free first phone conference.
  • Download our free booklet to learn more about the Investigation and Court process.
This is an indictable offence, but it can be heard summarily in the Magistrates’ Court.
 
What is the legal definition of Sexual Assault by Compelling Sexual Touching
The legal definition of Sexual Assault by Compelling Sexual Touching is when somebody forces another person to sexually touch themselves, sexually touch another person, sexually touch an animal, or be sexually touched by another person or an animal.

Examples of Sexual Assault by Compelling Sexual Touching
  • Someone forces another person to touch their own genitals by threatening the other person with violence.
  • Someone forces another person to touch them in a way that sexually gratifies them.
Elements of the offence
A person may be proven guilty of this charge if the following elements are satisfied in court:

  • The accused caused another person (C) to touch the accused; or
  • The accused caused another person (C) to touch themselves; or
  • The accused caused another person (C) to touch another person (P) or an animal; or
  • The accused caused another person (C) to be touched by another person (P) or by an animal; and
  • The touching was sexual; and
  • The person (C) did not consent to the touching; and
  • The accused did not reasonably believe that the person (C) consents to the touching.
Legislation
The section that covers this offence is section 41 of the Crimes Act 1958:

Sexual assault by compelling sexual touching
  1. A person (A) commits an offence if—
    1. A intentionally causes another person (B)—
      1. to touch A; or
      2. to touch themselves; or
      3. to touch another person (C) or an animal; or
      4. to be touched by C or by an animal; and
    2. the touching is sexual; and
    3. B does not consent to the touching; and
    4. A does not reasonably believe that B consents to the touching.
  2. A person who commits an offence against subsection (1) is liable to level 5 imprisonment (10 years maximum).1

[1] Australian legal Information Institute. “Crimes Act 1958 – Section 41: Sexual assault by compelling sexual touching.” Austlii.edu.au. http://classic.austlii.edu.au/au/legis/vic/consol_act/ca195882/s41.html (accessed June 22, 2020).
 
  • The other person consented.
  • There was no sexual touching.
There are other possible defences depending on the circumstances surrounding the alleged offending. Each matter is unique and requires individual approach and strategy.

Questions in cases like this
  • How can they prove that the touching was forced?
  • How can they prove that the touching was sexual?
 
Sexual Assault by Compelling Sexual Touching has a maximum penalty of 10 years imprisonment.
 
If you plead guilty to Sexual Assault by Compelling Sexual Touching in the County Court of Victoria, you may receive a term of imprisonment. However, you can reduce the prospect of receiving a prison sentence by:

  • Organising character references from your family and friends. Character references provide the Sentencing Court with an insight into your character. They also show the Court that you have supports in the community. In DPP v Aldrich [2015] VCC 1913 the Sentencing Judge placed weight on character references because they demonstrated that the accused had family support and that he was taking steps to address his wrong doing.
  • Organise an expert report. Our lawyers are experienced in engaging appropriately qualified experts who write reports for Court. Your offending might be able to be explained because you suffer from an undiagnosed mental health issue.
  • Present your personal circumstances to the sentencing Judge. We take the time in getting full personal instructions from our clients so that we can properly present our client’s personal circumstances to the Court.