It is a crime under the law in England and Wales for anyone in a position of responsibility over persons who require care in one capacity or the other to become sexually involved with such persons in their care; or to cause others to engage in non-consensual sexual relations with them. Consent may be tougher to prove in these cases, as persons in care, in some cases, are also largely incapable of decision making. The Sexual Offences Act refers to this as the abuse of a position of trust (Sec 16). Abuse of position of trust applies to children as much as it applies to older people who may nevertheless be impeded in their ability to choose or make informed decisions.
It is a crime, for instance, for those in care of mentally challenged people to take advantage of their diminished or non-existent capacity by engaging them in sexual activities. To induce, threaten and/or deceive a person with mental disorder into having sex or even watching a sexual act is a crime under the Sexual Offences Act. In a nutshell, those in charge of persons requiring special care such as children, persons with mental disorder or any other form of condition which limits their ability to choose will be committing a crime where they force and/or deceive such persons in their care into engaging in sexual activities and watching sexual acts.
This area of law is particularly concerned with people working in care, social workers, medical practitioners and others in position of trust. If however it can be proven that the sexual relations between the parties took place prior to the defendant’s assumption of a position of trust, charges of sexual crime against a vulnerable person may be dropped altogether. We must add however that this will only be possible where such sexual act could not in any event have been unlawful; it would remain unlawful regardless of the pre historic sexual liaison where the person in care was a minor. This can be both straightforward and complicated, depending on the surrounding circumstances.
The good news is that we are experts in defending our clients against any form of sexual crime allegations and will be happy to hear from you. Contact our defence solicitor in London for the most confidential consultation and we will proceed from there. Remember, a stitch in time saves nine. Contact us today!