Section 268.88 Criminal Code Act | National War Crime Use of Children


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The Legislation

Section 268.88 of the Criminal Code Act 1995 (Cth) is National War Crime Use of Children and is extracted below.

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268.88  War crime—using, conscripting or enlisting children

National armed forces

(1)  A person (the perpetrator) commits an offence if:

(a)  the perpetrator uses one or more persons to participate actively in hostilities as members of the national armed forces; and

(b)  the person or persons are under the age of 15 years; and

(d)  the perpetrator’s conduct takes place in the context of, and is associated with, an armed conflict that is not an international armed conflict.

Penalty:  Imprisonment for 17 years.

(2)  A person (the perpetrator) commits an offence if:

(a)  the perpetrator conscripts one or more persons into the national armed forces; and

(b)  the person or persons are under the age of 15 years; and

(d)  the perpetrator’s conduct takes place in the context of, and is associated with, an armed conflict that is not an international armed conflict.

Penalty:  Imprisonment for 15 years.

(3)  A person (the perpetrator) commits an offence if:

(a)  the perpetrator enlists one or more persons into the national armed forces; and

(b)  the person or persons are under the age of 15 years; and

(d)  the perpetrator’s conduct takes place in the context of, and is associated with, an armed conflict that is not an international armed conflict.

Penalty:  Imprisonment for 10 years.

Other armed forces and groups

(4)  A person (the perpetrator) commits an offence if:

(a)  the perpetrator uses one or more persons to participate actively in hostilities other than as members of the national armed forces; and

(b)  the person or persons are under the age of 18 years; and

(c)  the perpetrator’s conduct takes place in the context of, and is associated with, an armed conflict that is not an international armed conflict.

Penalty:  Imprisonment for 17 years.

(5)  A person (the perpetrator) commits an offence if:

(a)  the perpetrator conscripts one or more persons into an armed force or group other than the national armed forces; and

(b)  the person or persons are under the age of 18 years; and

(c)  the perpetrator’s conduct takes place in the context of, and is associated with, an armed conflict that is not an international armed conflict.

Penalty:  Imprisonment for 15 years.

(6)  A person (the perpetrator) commits an offence if:

(a)  the perpetrator enlists one or more persons into an armed force or group other than the national armed forces; and

(b)  the person or persons are under the age of 18 years; and

(c)  the perpetrator’s conduct takes place in the context of, and is associated with, an armed conflict that is not an international armed conflict.

Penalty for a contravention of this subsection: Imprisonment for 10 years.