Sexual assault of a child under 13

Sexual Offences Act 2003, s.7
Effective from: 01 April 2014

Triable either way

Maximum: 14 years’ custody

Offence range: Community order – 9 years’ custody

For offences committed on or after 3 December 2012, this is an offence listed in Part 1 of Schedule 15B for the purposes of section 224A (life sentence for second listed offence) of the Criminal Justice Act 2003.

For convictions on or after 3 December 2012 (irrespective of the date of commission of the offence), this is a specified offence for the purposes of section 226A (extended sentence for certain violent or sexual offences) of the Criminal Justice Act 2003.

User guide for this offence


Step 1 – Determining the offence category

The court should determine which categories of harm and culpability the offence falls into by reference only to the tables below.

Harm

Category 1

  • Severe psychological or physical harm
  • Abduction
  • Violence or threats of violence
  • Forced/uninvited entry into victim’s home

Category 2

  • Touching of naked genitalia or naked breast area
  • Prolonged detention/sustained incident
  • Additional degradation/humiliation
  • Child is particularly vulnerable due to extreme youth and/or personal circumstances

Category 3

  • Factor(s) in categories 1 and 2 not present

Culpability

A

  • Significant degree of planning
  • Offender acts together with others to commit the offence
  • Use of alcohol/drugs on victim to facilitate the offence
  • Grooming behaviour used against victim
  • Abuse of trust
  • Previous violence against victim
  • Offence committed in course of burglary
  • Sexual images of victim recorded, retained, solicited or shared
  • Deliberate isolation of victim
  • Commercial exploitation and/or motivation
  • Offence racially or religiously aggravated
  • Offence motivated by, or demonstrating, hostility to the victim based on his or her sexual orientation (or presumed sexual orientation) or transgender identity (or presumed transgender identity)
  • Offence motivated by, or demonstrating, hostility to the victim based on his or her disability (or presumed disability)

B

  • Factor(s) in category A not present