France finally outlaws sex with children aged under 15

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The French parliament has finally adopted legislation that characterizes sex with a child under the age of 15 as rape and punishable by up to 20 years in jail.

This development, which happened Thursday, brings the countries penal code closer in line with many other first-world nations.

Although the age of consent in France was previously 15, French prosecutors were notorious for soliciting proof that carnal knowledge between an adult and an underage person was non-consensual to charge for rape.

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“This is a historic law for our children and our society,” Justice Minister Eric Dupond-Moretti told the National Assembly.

“No adult aggressor will be able to claim the consent of a minor younger than 15 years old.”

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The vote in favour of the bill was unanimous at its final reading, even though a few lawmakers had earlier voiced concerns that making sex with a minor an outright crime might criminalize a consensual sexual relationship between a minor and a person only a few years older.

However, to checkmate this, a “Romeo and Juliet” clause is included in the bill. The clause allows for sexual relations between a minor and an individual up to five years older. The clause will also not apply in cases of sexual assault.
The French parliament has finally adopted legislation that characterizes sex with a child under the age of 15 as rape and punishable by up to 20 years in jail.

This development, which happened Thursday, brings the countries penal code closer in line with many other first-world nations.

Although the age of consent in France was previously 15, French prosecutors were notorious for soliciting proof that carnal knowledge between an adult and an underage person was non-consensual to charge for rape.

“This is a historic law for our children and our society,” Justice Minister Eric Dupond-Moretti told the National Assembly.

“No adult aggressor will be able to claim the consent of a minor younger than 15 years old.”

The vote in favour of the bill was unanimous at its final reading, even though a few lawmakers had earlier voiced concerns that making sex with a minor an outright crime might criminalize a consensual sexual relationship between a minor and a person only a few years older.

However, to checkmate this, a “Romeo and Juliet” clause is included in the bill. The clause allows for sexual relations between a minor and an individual up to five years older. The clause will also not apply in cases of sexual assault.