Hong Kong Lawyer

March 2017

Issue link: https://asianlegalbusiness.uberflip.com/i/795522

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Page 11 of 107

FROM THE COUNCIL TABLE 理 事 會 議 題 法律改革委員會《涉及兒童及精神缺損人 士的性罪行》諮詢文件 法改會於2006年4月獲委托檢討現行刑事法律下的性罪 行。性罪行檢討小組委員會於2006年7月組成,由鄧樂 勤資深大律師擔任主席。小組委員會於2008年6月(設 立性罪犯名冊)、2010年12月(廢除14歲以下男童無性 交能力的普通法推定)及2012年9月(強姦及其他未經同 意下進行的性罪行)分別就其研究項目的上述不同部分 發表了諮詢文件。 2016年11月,小組委員會發表了另一份諮詢文件: 《涉及兒童及精神缺損人士的性罪行》。這是小組委員 會在其研究範圍內發表的第4份諮詢文件。 法律改革委員會在諮詢文件內提出41項建議,其中所 涵蓋的性罪行大多牽涉到《保護原則》,亦即是刑事法 應保護某幾類易受傷害的人,使其免遭性侵犯或剝削。 這些易受傷害的人包括兒童、精神缺損人士,以及對處 於受信任地位的人信任的少年人。 諮詢文件的主要建議如下: (i) 同意年齡在香港應劃一定為16歲,並應不論性別 和性傾向而適用; (ii) 涉及兒童及少年人的罪行應無分性別,並應分為兩 類罪行,其中一類涉及13歲以下兒童,另一類則 涉及16歲以下兒童,這些罪行可由成年人或兒童 干犯; (iii) 就涉及年滿13歲但未滿16歲的兒童的罪行是否應 屬絕對法律責任罪行的問題,應交由香港社會考 慮; (iv) 年滿13歲但未滿16歲的人之間經同意下進行涉及 性的行為應繼續訂為刑事罪行,但認同控方有檢控 酌情權; (v) 新訂一系列涉及兒童的罪行,這些罪行無分性別, 並可為兒童提供更廣泛的保護; Law Reform Commission Report on Sexual Offences Involving Children and Persons with Mental Impairment The Law Reform Commission ("LRC") in April 2006 was asked to review the existing sexual offences under the criminal law. A sub- committee, chaired by Mr. Peter Duncan SC, was formed in June 2006. The Sub-committee published consultation papers in July 2008 (on establishment of a sex offenders register), December 2010 (on abolition of the common law presumption that a boy under 14 is incapable of sexual intercourse) and September 2012 (on rape and other non-consensual sexual offences). In November 2016, the Sub-committee published another consultation paper. This latest paper is on sexual offences involving children and persons with mental impairment (the "Consultation Paper"), and is the fourth consultation paper issued under the terms of reference of the Sub-committee. In the Consultation Paper, the LRC made a total of 41 recommendations. The sexual offences covered therein are largely concerned with the "Protective Principle" (ie, criminal law should give protection to certain categories of vulnerable persons against sexual abuse or exploitation). These vulnerable persons include children, persons with mental impairment, and young persons over whom others hold a position of trust. The main recommendations contained in the Consultation Paper are: (i) there should be a uniform age of consent in Hong Kong of 16 years of age, which should be applicable irrespective of gender and sexual orientation; (ii) offences involving children and young persons should be gender- neutral with two separate types of offences, one involving children under 13 and the other involving children under 16, and capable of being committed by either an adult or a child; (iii) the question of whether offences involving children aged between 13 and 16 should be of absolute liability should be a matter for consideration by the Hong Kong community; (iv) consensual sexual activity between persons who are aged between 13 and 16 should remain to be criminalised while recognising the existence of prosecutorial discretion; 10 www.hk-lawyer.org •  March 2017

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