KUCHING: Assistant Youth Development Minister Abdul Karim Rahman Hamzah feels the law on statutory rape should be reviewed, saying many such cases involved consensual sex.
He said statutory rape was defined as a sexual act committed against a minor below the age of 16, notwithstanding whether the victim consented to it or not.
“Why I say there should be a review of this law is because in many of the cases, the ‘victims’ are consenting partners.
“Their partners got charged because the parents of the girls lodged police reports of rape against them,” he told The Star yesterday.
A lawyer by training, Abdul Karim also pointed out that children nowadays matured physically and mentally at a much younger age, including in their understanding of sex.
“Whether in the west or east, the ages of kids experimenting or indulging in sexual acts are getting lower. Thus it’s not fair to crucify the boy for statutory rape in cases where the partner is a willing partner,” he said.
However, he added that if the victim was not a consenting or willing partner, he fully agreed that the perpetrator should be charged for rape.