Sexual Assaults merits its own category because they are treated differently by the Crown’s office, the Courts, and by the Criminal Code of Canada. There are different procedures and penalties that apply in Sexual Assault cases. If you are charged with Sexual Assault, you should also review, however, my article on “Assaults and Threats”.
What follows is a brief summary of the law. While it is not, and should not be relied upon as legal advice, it may assist you with some of the questions you might have. As always, consult a criminal lawyer should you need criminal advice.
All of the Sexual Assault offences are listed in the Criminal Code of Canada:
http://www.canlii.org/en/ca/laws/stat/rsc-1985-c-c-46/latest/rsc-1985-c-c-46.html. For ease of reference, I will discuss some of them below.
What the Crown must prove:
To find someone guilty of sexual assault, the Crown must prove that: (a) the defendant intentionally applied force to the victim (b) the victim did not consent to the force that was applied, (c) that the defendant knew that the victim did not consent to the force that was applied, and (d) the force that was applied took place in circumstances of a sexual nature. The force in question can be direct or indirect (for example, using an object), violent or gentle. To constitute an “assault” though, the force must be applied intentionally (on purpose) against another’s will.
Again, the Crown must prove that the complainant did not consent to the intentional application of force in the circumstances in which it occurred. Consent involves a voluntary agreement where the complainant must know what is going to happen, or what you were going to do and freely decide to let you do it. The consent must be freely given. The Crown has proven the defendant’s knowledge if it proves that the defendant was aware that there was a risk that the victim was not consenting to the force, but went ahead regardless, not caring whether the victim consented or not. Further, knowledge is proven if the Crown proves that the defendant should have inquired whether the victim consented to the force applied, but did not make the inquiry because the defendant did not want to know the truth about the victim’s consent.
To be clear, consent is a state of mind; the complainant’s state of mind at the time in which the alleged sexual activity took place and represents the complainant’s voluntary agreement to take place in the sexual activity in question. There is no “consent” when the complainant was too intoxicated or suffering from any other mental state such that the complainant was unable to understand the sexual nature of the conduct nor where the complainant was induced to participate in the sexual activity if the defendant abused a position of authority, trust, or power. Further, consent can be revoked at any time.
There are numerous ways to defend against all Sexual Assault related charges and I have successfully defended people against them numerous times – please refer to my Recent Successes page. The consequences to receiving a conviction for any sexual assault charge are significant (including jail time and being placed on a Sexual Offender Registry) and you should consult with a criminal lawyer to discuss these and other issues.
Again, the foregoing is only a summary. It is not legal advice and should not be relied upon as such. For a free consultation to discuss your case, please call me at
Client was charged with sexually assaulting his wife. It was alleged that he had assaulted her and after being released on bail, returned to her home and sexually assaulted her. He was charged with Sexual Assault, Assault, Criminal Harassment, Failing to Comply with his Recognizance and several other offences.
Client charged with Sexual Assault. It was alleged that he forced another woman who lived in the same apartment building with him, to have sexual intercourse. He denied this allegation and gave a motive for this woman to fabricate the story.
Client charged with two counts of Sexual Assault, Kidnapping, and Forcible Confinement. It was alleged that he met a girl in Quebec and kidnapped her. While being kidnapped, it was alleged that he forced her to engage in sexual intercourse. Client adamantly denied the allegations and although admitted to having sexual intercourse, he maintained that it was consensual.
Client charged with two counts of Sexual Assault, two counts of Sexual Interference, Assault with Weapon, and Assault. Client was alleged to have sexually assaulted his step-daughter on numerous occasions. He was also alleged to have used excessive force in disciplining his child
Client charged with Sexual Assault. It was alleged that after meeting with the complainant at a bar, he offered her a ride home. On the way home, he stopped his vehicle in an empty parking lot and forced her to have sexual intercourse.
Client was charged with Sexual Assault. It was alleged that he held a girl inside his apartment and forced her to have oral sex. Client’s position was that he was not even present and she performed oral sex on another individual.
Client charged with Gang Sexual Assault and Forcible Confinement. It was alleged that he and others forced a young girl to perform oral sex on them. He denied that he was even present while this was happening and knew nothing about it.
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