Vanuatu Parliament Considers Harsh Punishment For Sex With Minors

Proposal would impose life sentence for sex with children under 13 years of age

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (Radio New Zealand International, Nov. 15, 2016) – Sex with children under the age of 13 could be punished with life imprisonment if a new bill is passed by Vanuatu's parliament.

The Vanuatu Daily Post reports the new penalty is contained in the Penal Code Amendment Bill which will be considered by lawmakers next month.

If approved it will be the first time a penalty of life imprisonment has been set for any criminal conduct in Vanuatu.

[PIR editor's note: On November 16, 2016 RNZI reported that 'A women's rights group in Vanuatu is welcoming legislation that would strengthen sentences for sexual crimes against children and women.']

The new law also seeks to raise sentences for incest, abduction and assault.

The billl aims to impose sufficient penalties to deter offenders.

It follows an increasing number of serious sexual offences in Vanuatu, including offending against minors and incest.

Radio New Zealand International
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