Appeals court to rule on Sex Offences Act

2012-06-15 07:23
Johannesburg - The Supreme Court of Appeal was expected to rule on Friday on an urgent appeal by the NPA in the Western Cape about a case involving an apparent flaw in the Sexual Offences Act.

In May the Western Cape High Court upheld a decision by the Riversdale Magistrate's Court that a man who forcibly fondled a woman in 2009 could not be sentenced because the behaviour had no penalty under the act.

Arnold Prins was charged with sexual assault in terms of the act, which came into effect at the end of 2007.

Prior to his trial, Prins argued the behaviour of which he was accused had no penalty under the act. The regional court quashed the charges.

This decision was upheld by a full bench of the Western Cape High Court.

The National Prosecuting Authority applied for leave to appeal the judgment. SCA Judge President Lex Mpati granted the NPA's request.

Courts in KwaZulu-Natal and the Free State have taken a different interpretation of the act's silence, and the dilemma therefore exists only in the Western Cape.

The Sexual Offences Act was amended by Parliament on June 5, as an urgent interim measure, to give courts the discretion to impose sentences for the 29 offences for which penalties were not prescribed.

These offences include sexual assault, consensual sexual acts with children, sexual exploitation and grooming of children, and sexual offences against mentally disabled people.

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.
Read more on:    npa  |  legislation  |  child abuse
NEXT ON NEWS24X publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
1 comment
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24


Rugby World Cup 2015

All the action from the 2015 RWC, including live coverage of all 48 matches, breaking news, fixtures, results, logs - and much more!


Rugby World Cup 2015

Habana believes in younger Boks
All Blacks ready for a 'hell of a battle'
Barnes to ref Boks, Wales clash
Brave Blossoms: 'Sport heroes of Japan'

Your incisive and innovative mind is on fire. You may be keen to explore new avenues that can help to inspire you. You more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.