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Business Bulletin 1999-2011

Minutes of Proceedings 1999-2011

Journal of Parliamentary Proceedings Sessions 1 & 2

Committees Sessions 1, 2 & 3

Annual reports

 

Introduction

The Sexual Offences (Scotland) Bill was introduced in the Parliament on 17 June 2008. The Bill sought to place existing common law and statutory sexual offences into a single Act and, in doing so, make a number of important changes to existing law (e.g. in relation to the definition of rape). 

Background

The Bill repealed the common law offences of rape, sodomy and clandestine injury to women and a number of statutory sexual offences in addition to creating new statutory offences relating to sexual conduct, in particular where that takes place without consent.  It provided a general definition of consent as “free agreement” and supplemented this with a non-exhaustive list of factual circumstances in which free agreement, and therefore consent, was not present. The Bill also created new ‘protective offences’ which criminalised sexual activity with a person whose capacity to consent to sexual activity was either entirely absent or not fully formed either because of their age or because of a mental disorder.  Separate ‘protective’ offences were provided for in respect of sexual activity with young children (under the age of 13) and older children (from age 13 to age 15).  In addition, the Bill made it an offence of ‘abuse of position of trust’ for a person in a position of trust (over a child or person with a mental disorder) to engage in sexual activity with that child or person.

SPICe briefings relating to the Bill (as introduced)

Justice Committee - Stage 1 Scrutiny

Call for evidence

The Committee issued a call for written evidence. Submissions received can be found below.

 

Oral evidence

The Committee took evidence on the Bill at its meetings on 28 October, 4, 11, 18 and 25 November 2008. Please follow the links below to the papers, official reports and minutes of the meetings.

  • 28 October 2008

Agenda and papers (689 KB pdf)

Official Report

Minutes

  • 4 November 2008

Agenda and papers (127 KB pdf)

Official Report

Minutes

  • 11 November 2008

Agenda and papers (215 KB pdf)

Official Report

Minutes

  • 18 November 2008

Agenda and papers (164 KB pdf)

Official Report

Minutes

  • 25 November 2008

Agenda and papers (629 KB pdf)

Official Report

Minutes

Supplementary written evidence

Please follow the link below to supplementary submissions received.

Committee Report

The Committee published its report on 16 January 2009. Please follow the links below to the report and accompanying news release and the response from the Cabinet Secretary for Justice.

Justice Committee - Stage 2 Consideration

17 March 2009 (Consideration of amendments, Day 1)

24 March 2009 (Consideration of amendments, Day 2)

31 March 2009 (Consideration of amendments, Day 3)

The Bill passed Stage 2 on 31 March 2009.

Stage 3 proceedings

The Bill passed Stage 3 on 10 June 2009.

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Contact: For specific information on the Bill, please contact Andrew Proudfoot, Assistant Clerk to the Committee, on 0131 348 5047 or email justice.committee@scottish.parliament.uk