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  1. #1
    @hibs.net private member Hibbyradge's Avatar
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    French rape/sexual assault laws

    Hark back to the scenes in Trainspotting when Renton has sex with Diane only to find out in the morning that she's only 14.

    He's mortified. She's blasé, but under our laws, he'd likely be jailed.

    It's a scene which provokes much debate, external or otherwise.

    If you're in a venue with a minimum entry age of 18, is it unreasonable to assume the people you meet there to be above the legal age of consent?

    Is it wrong for a man to be attracted to younger women?

    Is age itself a robust enough guage to determine sexual consent anyway?

    When does protection of the vulnerable encroach on reasonable behaviour?

    It seems France struggles with this dilemma too, although their law is so ambiguous that it almost invites controversy.

    French girl, 11, 'not a child' say lawyers for man, 29, accused of sexual abuse

    https://www.theguardian.com/world/20...y_to_clipboard


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  3. #2
    @hibs.net private member Peevemor's Avatar
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    It's a realy difficult subject. I think that the UK has it about right, with a legal age of 16 but without the statutory rape thing that they have in the USA.

    The French law is pretty ambiguous (although even though I've been here for 13+ years, I didn't know there was no statutory age of consent) but understandable in a way. Obviously the thought of a 30 year old bloke having sex with a girl of 11 is abhorrent, but should sex between 2 consenting 15 year olds (for example) be a criminal act?

  4. #3
    @hibs.net private member danhibees1875's Avatar
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    What are our rules here if the male has just turned 16, but the girl is still 15? If there isn't a black and white point where it becomes legal, how much of a gap is allowed before it stops being a subjective matter?

    Is it still the case that it's different if the person of age is a female then it's a totally different scenario to if it were a man?

    It's a good point on meeting people in clubs etc, is that not what happened to Graham Rix? He was in an over 21s club and ended up with a 15 year old?
    Mon the Hibs.

  5. #4
    johnbc70
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    Quote Originally Posted by danhibees1875 View Post
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    What are our rules here if the male has just turned 16, but the girl is still 15? If there isn't a black and white point where it becomes legal, how much of a gap is allowed before it stops being a subjective matter?

    Is it still the case that it's different if the person of age is a female then it's a totally different scenario to if it were a man?

    It's a good point on meeting people in clubs etc, is that not what happened to Graham Rix? He was in an over 21s club and ended up with a 15 year old?
    If I remember though Rix knew she was 15 at the time.

    There was a case maybe a year ago where a man was charged with an offence but let off as the girl looked and claimed to be much older. Can't recall exact details.

  6. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by johnbc70 View Post
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    If I remember though Rix knew she was 15 at the time.

    There was a case maybe a year ago where a man was charged with an offence but let off as the girl looked and claimed to be much older. Can't recall exact details.
    I think the Rix case hinged on guilty knowledge. The girl claimed to be over the age of 16 but had mentioned in conversation she was too young to remember him in a certain World Cup and the prosecution argued he should have worked things out from that comment.

    It is a very interesting discussion. At 15 I was, to all intents and purposes, in a relationship with a girl who was 17 and closer to 18 than 16. I never felt abused, pressured or whatever and it was treated as something I should have been proud of as opposed to ashamed about. I daresay the reaction would have been different, perhaps correctly, had the roles been reversed.

  7. #6
    @hibs.net private member overdrive's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pretty Boy View Post
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    I daresay the reaction would have been different, perhaps correctly, had the roles been reversed.
    Should it, though?

    I find it interesting reading and comparing comments on articles about teachers running off with pupils. Male teacher with girl pupil (or boy?) even where the girl is over 16 - “pervert, ****bag”, “poor, vulnerable girl”, etc. (And quite rightly so). Female teacher with a boy - “what is he complaining about, this is every boy’s dream, what a loser”, “I wish I had a teacher like her when I was at school”, etc. The difference in the way it is treated makes me uncomfortable and probably even more so where the two participants are closer in age, like your example.

  8. #7
    @hibs.net private member Hibbyradge's Avatar
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    Didn't Rix know the family or something?
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  9. #8
    @hibs.net private member overdrive's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hibbyradge View Post
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    Didn't Rix know the family or something?
    Was that not the Craig Thomson incident? May have been the case in the Rix case as well, right enough.

  10. #9
    @hibs.net private member Hibbyradge's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by overdrive View Post
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    Was that not the Craig Thomson incident? May have been the case in the Rix case as well, right enough.
    I think you're correct.

    I found this;

    https://www.scotsman.com/sport/footb...iour-1-1103764
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  11. #10
    I know of a case where a guy met a 15 year old girl through the internet who had claimed to be 18. The police told him to be careful and no further action. When same guy was caught doing the same again with another girl the police had reason to believe he was actually a beast and he ended up in prison, and rightly so. It is a difficult one though, especially where a girl says she is older and doesn't look like a child, more like a 20 year old.

  12. #11
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    Ignorance is not a defence. If any doubt a guy would be a fool to chance it.

  13. #12
    @hibs.net private member McD's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by overdrive View Post
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    Should it, though?

    I find it interesting reading and comparing comments on articles about teachers running off with pupils. Male teacher with girl pupil (or boy?) even where the girl is over 16 - “pervert, ****bag”, “poor, vulnerable girl”, etc. (And quite rightly so). Female teacher with a boy - “what is he complaining about, this is every boy’s dream, what a loser”, “I wish I had a teacher like her when I was at school”, etc. The difference in the way it is treated makes me uncomfortable and probably even more so where the two participants are closer in age, like your example.

    I agree with your sentiments, there’s a level of double standards that are sometimes applied based on the gender roles, as you’ve described.

    If we’re saying a male teacher is taking advantage of a female student (under 16), then the same principle applies in reverse, a female teacher is taking advantage of a male student.

    Its a reverse sexist attitude, that only young teenage girls are vulnerable and taken advantage of (and not young teenage boys). Then there’s the flip side, that a male teacher is a predator and taking advantage but a female teacher isn’t.

  14. #13
    Coaching Staff hibsbollah's Avatar
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    It's a very difficult issue to discuss. One one hand, I would never defend predatory sexual behaviour, almost always towards young women, which is a societal problem and is disgusting.

    But there is also a danger of criminalising clumsy flirting behaviour which is natural and human nature. I've had a narrow escape myself once in a club years ago, when a girl I assumed was way beyond the age of consent and was 'up for it' as they say, I later found out was 15 and still at school! We didn't actually 'do' anything, but if circumstances were different I could conceivably have been in a lot of trouble.

    On balance, I think our laws have it just about right and the French laws are worryingly Liberal.

  15. #14
    Coaching Staff Smartie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hibsbollah View Post
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    It's a very difficult issue to discuss. One one hand, I would never defend predatory sexual behaviour, almost always towards young women, which is a societal problem and is disgusting.

    But there is also a danger of criminalising clumsy flirting behaviour which is natural and human nature. I've had a narrow escape myself once in a club years ago, when a girl I assumed was way beyond the age of consent and was 'up for it' as they say, I later found out was 15 and still at school! We didn't actually 'do' anything, but if circumstances were different I could conceivably have been in a lot of trouble.

    On balance, I think our laws have it just about right and the French laws are worryingly Liberal.
    Another concern that I have currently is that we are not even necessarily criminalising such behaviour (which requires a proper legal process to be followed in order to establish guilt) but destroying reputations via allegations in the media and on social media.

    It doesn't come naturally to me to say stuff like this, as it is easy to come across as an apologist for serial sexual predators. But we've got to be very careful how we follow up this whole "me too" movement.

    If you don't have a clumsy behaviour skeleton somewhere in your closet (that you're probably ashamed of, managed to get away with but know that 99.9% of the human race have probably got some sort of similar story about) then you are not a human being.

    And I think that the passage of time may alter some of the memories of these incidents.


    I agree with your final line - we are right, the French are wrong. I encounter a few teenage girls at my work and I'm fairly terrified of them. They can be gorgeous, can carry themselves with huge confidence, and yet when you speak to them (and sometimes see them up close) you realise that they are wee lassies. They need to be protected, from predators and from themselves, and the law needs to do so. It is disgusting that a 29 year old can in any way justify or get away with having sex with an 11 year old. I'd put myself at the very liberal end of the scale, but there are lines that mustn't be crossed, and there are things that shouldn't happen.

    I think the law in this country is fairly reasonable - I suspect that there will be regular sexual activity between people who are close to but either side of the age of consent - there is little point in punishing these people and the law will take a common sense attitude. Exploiting positions of power and influence are a very different story.

    I tell you what though - I'm glad I'm in a steady relationship and have no desire to be looking for sexual partners. It seems to be a minefield these days. The hazy, heady, intoxicated mid to late nineties where I was in an inebriated stupor chasing ladies who were likewise feels a world away.

  16. #15
    Coaching Staff hibsbollah's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Smartie View Post
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    Another concern that I have currently is that we are not even necessarily criminalising such behaviour (which requires a proper legal process to be followed in order to establish guilt) but destroying reputations via allegations in the media and on social media.

    It doesn't come naturally to me to say stuff like this, as it is easy to come across as an apologist for serial sexual predators. But we've got to be very careful how we follow up this whole "me too" movement.

    If you don't have a clumsy behaviour skeleton somewhere in your closet (that you're probably ashamed of, managed to get away with but know that 99.9% of the human race have probably got some sort of similar story about) then you are not a human being.

    And I think that the passage of time may alter some of the memories of these incidents.


    I agree with your final line - we are right, the French are wrong. I encounter a few teenage girls at my work and I'm fairly terrified of them. They can be gorgeous, can carry themselves with huge confidence, and yet when you speak to them (and sometimes see them up close) you realise that they are wee lassies. They need to be protected, from predators and from themselves, and the law needs to do so. It is disgusting that a 29 year old can in any way justify or get away with having sex with an 11 year old. I'd put myself at the very liberal end of the scale, but there are lines that mustn't be crossed, and there are things that shouldn't happen.

    I think the law in this country is fairly reasonable - I suspect that there will be regular sexual activity between people who are close to but either side of the age of consent - there is little point in punishing these people and the law will take a common sense attitude. Exploiting positions of power and influence are a very different story.

    I tell you what though - I'm glad I'm in a steady relationship and have no desire to be looking for sexual partners. It seems to be a minefield these days. The hazy, heady, intoxicated mid to late nineties where I was in an inebriated stupor chasing ladies who were likewise feels a world away.
    But if someone takes my sentence that you put in bold and took that out of context as 'my position' on the subject, a social media ****storm would doubtless ensue. (especially if I was in the public eye).

  17. #16
    @hibs.net private member lord bunberry's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hibsbollah View Post
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    It's a very difficult issue to discuss. One one hand, I would never defend predatory sexual behaviour, almost always towards young women, which is a societal problem and is disgusting.

    But there is also a danger of criminalising clumsy flirting behaviour which is natural and human nature. I've had a narrow escape myself once in a club years ago, when a girl I assumed was way beyond the age of consent and was 'up for it' as they say, I later found out was 15 and still at school! We didn't actually 'do' anything, but if circumstances were different I could conceivably have been in a lot of trouble.

    On balance, I think our laws have it just about right and the French laws are worryingly Liberal.
    The same thing happened to me in a club. One of the girls pals came over and told me she was only 15. At the time I was only 18 and I didn’t really think I’d had a lucky escape. It’s only now when I look back at it that I realise I was lucky. It must be much more common now as know as kids seem to grow up much quicker.

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  18. #17
    @hibs.net private member Hibbyradge's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Smartie View Post
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    If you don't have a clumsy behaviour skeleton somewhere in your closet (that you're probably ashamed of, managed to get away with but know that 99.9% of the human race have probably got some sort of similar story about) then you are not a human being.
    Sorry, but that made me laugh.

    I would think that the majority of people have done nothing to be ashamed of.
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  19. #18
    Testimonial Due Colr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by McD View Post
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    I agree with your sentiments, there’s a level of double standards that are sometimes applied based on the gender roles, as you’ve described.

    If we’re saying a male teacher is taking advantage of a female student (under 16), then the same principle applies in reverse, a female teacher is taking advantage of a male student.

    Its a reverse sexist attitude, that only young teenage girls are vulnerable and taken advantage of (and not young teenage boys). Then there’s the flip side, that a male teacher is a predator and taking advantage but a female teacher isn’t.
    I agree but female teachers who have taken advantage of male pupils have been jailed for it. If there’s a double standard it in the minds of people whose sexual attitudes are stuck in the 1970s.

  20. #19
    Testimonial Due Colr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lord bunberry View Post
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    The same thing happened to me in a club. One of the girls pals came over and told me she was only 15. At the time I was only 18 and I didn’t really think I’d had a lucky escape. It’s only now when I look back at it that I realise I was lucky. It must be much more common now as know as kids seem to grow up much quicker.
    Kids are maybe exposed to sexualisation much earlier but it was always the case with girls who are force-fed from an early age that their self worth is bound up in their success at forming relationships with the opposite sex. I’ve heard people opine that girls are more mature than boys at that age. I don’t agree, girls have just learned to parrot adult sexual behaviour and may appear more mature but neither girls or boys will really know what they are doing yet. There’s more to sex than ****ing anyway.

  21. #20
    @hibs.net private member Steve-O's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hibbyradge View Post
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    Hark back to the scenes in Trainspotting when Renton has sex with Diane only to find out in the morning that she's only 14.

    He's mortified. She's blasé, but under our laws, he'd likely be jailed.

    It's a scene which provokes much debate, external or otherwise.

    If you're in a venue with a minimum entry age of 18, is it unreasonable to assume the people you meet there to be above the legal age of consent?

    Is it wrong for a man to be attracted to younger women?

    Is age itself a robust enough guage to determine sexual consent anyway?

    When does protection of the vulnerable encroach on reasonable behaviour?

    It seems France struggles with this dilemma too, although their law is so ambiguous that it almost invites controversy.

    French girl, 11, 'not a child' say lawyers for man, 29, accused of sexual abuse

    https://www.theguardian.com/world/20...y_to_clipboard
    French law is clearly too relaxed. A 28 year old and an 11 year old is very wrong. Not being able to be charged with rape as there was no ‘violence or coercion’ is quite bizarre. A 28 year old is clearly capable of manipulating an 11 year old without having to use violence or coercion and that’s the issue really.

    I’m not entirely comfortable with the fact someone in law is a ‘child’ one day and an adult the next (i.e. their 16th birthday) but the French interpretation seems too far the other way.

    A bizarre one over here is that even if the male is 15 and has sex with a 15 year old and is ultimately convicted of ‘sexual connection with person 12-16’, they are by definition in law, a child sex offender. Struck me as little odd when I realised that!

  22. #21
    @hibs.net private member Steve-O's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hibbyradge View Post
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    Sorry, but that made me laugh.

    I would think that the majority of people have done nothing to be ashamed of.
    Nothing at all? Ever?

  23. #22
    Private Members Prediction League Winner Hibrandenburg's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve-O View Post
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    Nothing at all? Ever?
    Let he without sin twang the first bra strap.

  24. #23
    @hibs.net private member Hibbyradge's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve-O View Post
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    Nothing at all? Ever?
    Nothing sexual.
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  25. #24
    @hibs.net private member Peevemor's Avatar
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    I haven't done anything sexual that I'm ashamed of, but there are things I have done that I certainly wouldn't brag about.

    There's a difference.

  26. #25
    Testimonial Due Geo_1875's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Peevemor View Post
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    I haven't done anything sexual that I'm ashamed of, but there are things I have done that I certainly wouldn't brag about.

    There's a difference.
    There's also a difference in people's perceptions of what constitutes sexual. What some people see as harmless interaction can be viewed as harrassment by others and if they're of one of the other genders that can cause problems.

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