Incest

Section 44 of the Crimes Act 1958 (Vic) creates the offence of incest. Although a single offence is created, there are 4 different ways in which the offence can be committed.  The prosecution must prove the different elements in respect of each distinct kind of offence.  The maximum penalty is dependent upon which type of incest is alleged.

It is an extremely serious offence. Anything that you say in a police interview or to anyone else can potentially have consequences for the further conduct of your case. Seeking legal advice at the earliest opportunity is of vital importance in order to enable us to properly and expertly prepare a strategy to manage your matter. If you need to speak with an incest lawyer in Melbourne for legal advice, call Furstenberg Law.

Section 44(1): Incest

To prove this offence, the prosecution must establish the following beyond reasonable doubt:

  1. That the accused took part in an act of sexual penetration with the complainant;
  2. That the accused knew the victim to be his or her child; and
  3. That the victim was the accused’s child or was reputed to be the accused’s child.

Section 44(2): Incest

To prove this offence, the prosecution must establish the following beyond reasonable doubt:

  1. That the accused took part in an act of sexual penetration with the victim;
  2. That the victim was a person under the age of 18 years;
  3. That the accused knew the victim was a child of his or her de facto spouse; and
  4. That the victim was the child of the accused’s de facto spouse.

Section 44(3): Incest

To prove this offence, the prosecution must establish the following beyond reasonable doubt:

  1. That the accused was 18 years of age or above;
  2. That the accused took part in an act of sexual penetration with the victim;
  3. That the accused knew the victim to be his or her father, mother, other lineal ancestor, step-father or step-mother; and
  4. That the victim was the accused’s father, mother, other lineal ancestor, step-father or step-mother or was reputed to be the accused’s father, mother, other lineal ancestor, step-father or step-mother.

Section 44(4): Incest

To prove this offence, the prosecution must establish the following beyond reasonable doubt:

  1. That the accused took part in an act of sexual penetration with the victim;
  2. That the accused knew the victim to be his or her sister, half-sister, brother or half-brother; and
  3. That the victim was the accused’s sister, half-sister, brother or half-brother or was reputed to be the accused’s sister, half-sister, brother or half-brother.

The maximum penalty for incest pursuant to sections 44(1) and 44(2) (incest with descendants) is 25 years imprisonment.

The maximum penalty for incest pursuant to sections 44(3) and 44(4) (incest with siblings and ancestors) is 5 years imprisonment.

Furstenberg Law specialises in criminal defence against sexual offences. If you have been charged with incest and need to speak with a lawyer in Melbourne to discuss your case, contact us at (03) 9607 8455.