Recent developments in sexual offences against children – a constitutional perspective27 July 2016
This contribution deals with recent developments in sexual offences against children with reference to sections in the Criminal Law (Sexual Offences and Related Matters) Amendment Act 32 of 2007. This Act is addressed against the backdrop of the Constitutional Court judgments in Teddybear Clinic for Abused Children v Minister of Justice and Constitutional Development and J v National Director of Public Prosecutions. These two judgments had a profound impact on the shaping of the newly formulated sexual offences in line with constitutional principles, ultimately culminating in the enactment and commencement of the Criminal Law (Sexual Offences and Related Matters) Amendment Act 5 of 2015. The approach by the Constitutional Court in both of these judgments is discussed and assessed. An analysis is provided of the Amendment Act with specific reference to its impact on sexual offences against children.