Explanatory Notes

Sexual Offences Act 2003

2003 CHAPTER 42

20 November 2003

Commentary on Sections

Part 1: Sexual Offences

Section 1: Rape

10.Section 1 makes it an offence for a person (A) intentionally to penetrate with his penis the vagina, anus or mouth of another person (B) without that person’s consent if A does not reasonably believe that B consents. Subsection (2) provides that whether a belief in consent is reasonable is to be determined having regard to all the circumstances, including any steps A has taken to ascertain whether B consents. This and the offence in section 5 are the only offences that can only be committed by a male, because they relate to penile penetration. Subsection (3) provides that sections 75 and 76 apply to this offence. Sections 75 and 76 deal with evidential and conclusive presumptions about consent.