(1) A person (A) commits an offence if—
(a) A intentionally—
(i) touches another person (B); or
(ii) causes or allows B to touch A; or
(iii) causes B—
(A) to touch, or to continue to touch, themselves; or
(B) to touch, or to continue to touch, another person (C); or
(C) to be touched, or to continue to be touched, by C; and
(b) B is a child under the age of 16 years; and
(c) the touching is—
(i) sexual; and
(ii) contrary to community standards of acceptable conduct.
(2) A person who commits an offence against subsection (1) is liable to level 5 imprisonment (10 years maximum).
S. 49D(2A) inserted by No. 34/2017 s. 29(1).
(2A) The standard sentence for an offence against subsection (1) is 4 years.
(3) Whether or not the touching is contrary to community standards of acceptable conduct depends on the circumstances.
(4) For the purposes of subsection (3)—
(a) the circumstances include—
(i) the purpose of the touching; and
(ii) whether A seeks or gets sexual arousal or sexual gratification from the touching;
(b) the circumstances do not include—
(i) whether B consents to the touching; or
(ii) whether A believes that B consents to the touching.
1 An exception applies to this offence—see section 49U.
2 A defence applies to this offence—see section 49W.
3 A mistaken but honest and reasonable belief that the touching was not sexual or contrary to community standards of acceptable conduct is not a defence to this offence—see section 49ZC.
Note 4 to s. 49D inserted by No. 34/2017 s. 29(2).
4 See sections 5A and 5B of the Sentencing Act 1991 as to standard sentences.
S. 49E inserted by No. 47/2016 s. 16.