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Sexual Intercourse with a Young Person Under Special Care

Sexual Intercourse with a Young Person Under Special Care is an offence under section 73 of the Crimes Act 1900, which carries a maximum penalty of 4 years in prison where the young person was at least 17 but less than 18 years of age, or 8 years in prison where the young person was at least 16 but less than 17 years of age.

To establish the offence, the prosecution must prove beyond reasonable doubt that:

  1. You had sexual intercourse with a young person
  2. You knew, or were reckless as to whether, he or she was a young person, and
  3. The young person was under your ‘special care’

‘Sexual intercourse’ is defined as:

  1. The penetration to any extent of a female’s genitalia, or the anus of any person, by any part of, or object used by, another person, or
  2. The introduction of a penis into the mouth of another person, or
  3. Cunnilingus, or
  4. The continuation of any of these activities

A ‘young person’ is someone aged at least 16 but less than 18 years.

The young person was under your ‘special care’ if:

  1. You were his or her step-parent, guardian, authorised carer, or the de facto partner of his or her parent, guardian or authorised carer
  2. You were a member of the teaching staff at his or her school
  3. You established a personal relationship with him or her in connection with the provision of religious, sporting, musical or other instruction
  4. You were a custodial officer at an institution where he or she was an inmate, or
  5. You were a health professional and he or she was your patient

You cannot be found guilty if you were married to the young person.

Duress is also a defence to the charge.

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