Scots Government set to legalise oral sex for 13s

The Scottish Government is moving ahead with plans which will legalise oral sex and other types of sexual activity for 13s and up, a criminal law barrister has confirmed.Edinburgh-based QC Herbert Kerrigan says the Sexual Offences (Scotland) Bill, currently making its way through Parliament, will legalise at least eleven scenarios of oral sex which are presently unlawful.

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  • He also said that the Bill will create a legal “minefield”. He said: “In my opinion the definition of ‘consent’ and the ancillary provisions related to it in various parts of the Bill will prove to be a minefield and there will be a large amount of litigation about these both at trial and appeal levels.

    “As presently drafted the Bill will cause difficulties for both prosecution and defence and, whilst well meaning, will in fact create shadows where present law and practice is clearer.”

    The Christian Institute’s Mike Judge said: “Legalising oral sex for teens sends out completely the wrong message to a generation of young people crying out for some moral guidance, not more sexual licence.

    “How can the Scottish Government give hard-hitting warnings to teenagers about smoking and drinking, but at the same time give the green light to oral sex?

    “Oral sex is not a risk-free activity, teenagers can catch a range of sexually transmitted infections. And does the Scottish Government seriously think that a teenager engaging in oral sex will stop there and not rapidly progress to full sexual intercourse?

    “This policy will be totally counter-productive to the Government’s goal of reducing the number of teenage pregnancies and improving teenage sexual health.

    “Watering down the age of consent law will also make it more difficult for the authorities to use their discretionary powers to intervene in appropriate cases where a 13-year-old could be being exploited by an older teenager.”

    The Christian Institute’s David Greatorex and Care for Scotland’s Gordon Macdonald give evidence to the Scottish Parliament’s Justice Committee: