I read with much trepidation the recent cases on statutory rape. But was further dismayed by the comments by many. I can’t comment on the electrician’s rape case as I’ve yet to come across the judgement but have read Raus’s reasoning in Afrizal’s case. But these cases highlight the growing trend of teenage consensual sex which we all tend to miss and a much bigger problem for us parents.
First thing first. A consensual sex can never be rape unless with a minor. That everybody must be clear. Afrizal has committed the rape. So an offence has been committed and he pleaded guilty. The main issue is with sentencing. This is the biggest issue we face now. So please don’t argue the case says there’s no rape.
Sentencing for statutory rape must be harsh between an adult and a minor. Pedophiles for example must be incarcerated to the max as far as Im concern. But teenage sex especially consensual should be treated differently.
Worldwide we are grappling with teenage consensual sex. The internet has exposed our kids to sex at a very early age. By standard one I’ve got nieces and nephews knowing what are heterosexual couple, gay and lesbians. Its crazy but our kids before my eyes mature very early nowadays.
For a good write up and easy read on the issue of teenage sex and statutory rape please refer to this link http://www.singaporelawreview.org/2010/02/romeo-knew-juliet-was-a-minor-but%E2%80%A6/. In brief I wish to highlight that in Singapore there’s an alternative law to deal with the teenage sex. It need not be statutory rape but it’s still an offence albeit with differing punishment.
My stand is that as a value I’m against teenage sex, period. I think we must carry this value in the law. The law must state its still wrong. We should have a different law provision to deal with these cases and offer different penalties so as to make it as a deterrent. But a long term incarceration as in under the statutory rape provision of Section 376 may be counter productive. As in PP v. Mok Ping Wuen Maurice, (see article) the judge said that “[y]oung offenders are in their formative years and chances of reforming them into law-abiding adults are better [without imprisonment]. The corrupt influence of a prison environment and the bad effects of labelling and stigmatisation may not be desirable for young offenders.”
I think we should increase the age of 16 to 18. No one should marry under 18 nowadays (I’m willing to go higher if that is reflective of our value.) We don’t have to charge them as a statutory rape but have a different law to deal with the teenage offenders.