The effect of the law is that if two year-olds engage in consensual sexual activity and each knows that the other is under 16, they will both be guilty of an offence carrying a maximum penalty of five years' imprisonment. Loading comments… Trouble loading? Nonjuror asks : Tim Loughton MP wants each of any pair of unders who have sex to face criminal prosecution under the existing law. They acknowledged that the offence was one of strict liability but considered that, since the policy of the legislation was to protect children, it was justified. The House of Lords rejected both arguments. For the purposes of sentencing, the prosecution accepted that the girl consented and that she had said she was Nor was it unjustified to label the offence "rape". All of the judges agreed there were good policy reasons for a clear law which conveys the message, not only to adults but also to children, that sexual activity with a child under 16 is an offence.
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