Section 14 criminalises acts of “gross indecency” between persons of the same sex, encompassing sexual intimacy other than sexual intercourse. Acts between men and between women are penalised under this law.1 Following an amendment in 2016, this offence carries a punishment of twelve years imprisonment.2
Types of criminalisation
- Criminalises sex between men
- Criminalises sex between women
Commonwealth member state
1. Sexual Offences Act 1998, Section 14 Gross Indecency
(2) Subsection (1) does not apply to an act of gross indecency committed in private between an adult male person and an adult female person, both of whom consent.
(4) In this section “gross indecency” is an act other than sexual intercourse (whether natural or unnatural) by a person involving the use of genital organs for the purpose of arousing or gratifying sexual desire.” Full text.
2. Sexual Offences (Amendment) Act 2016, Section 7
(a) by deleting subsection (1) and substituting the following:
(1) Any person who commits an act of gross indecency with another person is guilty of an offence and liable on conviction to imprisonment—
(a) if the complainant is a person sixteen years of age or more, for twelve years” Full text.
3. Sexual Offences Act 1998, Section 16(1) Buggery
(b) ten years, if committed by an adult on another adult;
and, if the Court thinks it fit, the Court may order that the convicted person be admitted to a psychiatric hospital for treatment.
4. Sexual Offences Act 1998, Section 16(2) Attempted Buggery
“(2) Any person who attempts to commit the offence of buggery, or is guilty of an assault with the intent to commit the same is guilty of an offence and liable to imprisonment for four years and, if the Court thinks it fit, the Court may order that the convicted person be admitted to the psychiatric hospital for treatment.” Full text.