FRANCE is considering a change to the laws surrounding sexual consent after two men were acquitted of raping two 11 year old girls.
Justice Minister Nicole Belloubet today said that the age of just 13 was now a “limit that is worth considering” by law makers.
AFP or licensors Women call for a legislative change to set a minimum legal age for sexual consent at a protest in Paris
However, she made it clear she believed judges should still assess whether someone was old enough to give consent on a case-by-case basis.
The move comes after the French courts twice refused to prosecute grown men for rape after they had sex with 11-year-olds because authorities couldn’t prove coercion.
It is already illegal in France to have sex with under 15s, but rape charges can only be brought if prosecutors can prove the act was non-consensual.
The government is now drafting a bill to say sex with children under a certain age is as a result of the youngster feeling threatened.
AFP or licensors A woman holds a placard reading ”In France, rapists and paedophiles are protected by law’ AFP or licensors The outrage follows two shocking rapes of 11 year old girls
Feminist groups plan a protest Tuesday to argue the age should be set at 15.
Despite its age of consent, France currently does not have any law which defines sex with someone below a fixed age as rape.
Currently in France if there is no violence or coercion proved, people may only be charged with sexual abuse of a minor charge and not rape- this has a maximum sentence of five years in prison and a fine of £66,000.
However, punishments for rape have much stonger sentences.
“The question of the age below which the minor’s consent is presumed not to exist is crucial, because there are obviously extremely shocking and unacceptable situations,” said Belloubet.
AFP or licensors Feminist groups plan another protest Tuesday to argue the age should be set at 15 Sinister ‘guru’ who forces dozens of his ‘wives’ into orgies and pornos and abuses their kids set to be extradited to
Two recent court cases have heightened the debate over who is old enough to consent to sex under French law.
In the most recent case, a jury at Meaux, near Paris, said last week that the prosecution failed to prove any of the four criteria required for rape under French law – threat, violence, constraint or surprise.
The accused man, a Cape Verde citizen now aged 30, who has not been named, accosted the girl in the street where she was playing in 2009, took her to a park and had sex with her.
She told no-one but became pregnant and her parents alerted the police.
He was not charged until after he returned to France in 2014. He will be retried next year after the prosecution appealed against his acquittal.