Assault By Penetration

Assault By Penetration

Assault by penetration is an offence under section 2 of The Sexual Offences Act 2003. It is indictable only, meaning it must be heard in the Crown Court.

The prosecution must prove the following:

• intentional penetration;
• of the vagina or anus (not mouth) of the complainant;
• with a part of the defendant’s body or anything else;
• that penetration was sexual;
• the complainant did not consent to the penetration; and
• the defendant did not reasonably believe that the complainant was consenting

If any of the above factors are not present, you should plead not guilty
Key issues for cases of assault by penetration is that of consent, and this will need to be considered in detail before you are advised on a plea. You will be required to consider the steps you had taken to judge consent, and these steps will help determine how reasonable your belief of consent was.

Assault by penetration can be committed against a male or female.

Alternative offences include attempt and sexual assault.

Section 2 of the Sexual Offences Act 2003 is drafted in a wide enough way for penetration by the penis to be included in the charge, but these incidences should be charged as rape, and not assault by penetration.

Maxim sentence: life imprisonment
Offence range: community order – 19 years

If you are being investigated for, or charged with, assault by penetration, it is vital that you seek specialist help immediately.

Length of Sentence

Registration Period
For Adult

Registration Period
for Under 18

30 Months imprisonment or more



6 months to 30 months imprisonment

10 years

5 years

Less than 6 months imprisonment or Community Order

7 years

3½ Years

Police Caution

2 years

1 year

Failing to comply with the notification requirements is an either way offence. This means that it can be dealt with by either the Magistrates Court or the Crown Court. The maximum sentence is 5 years imprisonment at the Crown Court. In addition to this, there is a risk that an offender could be recalled to prison if the Home Office believes the offender is in breach of their licence conditions.

If you are accused of any sexual offence there is a very real danger of receiving a prison sentence, and your entire life being damaged by the allegation. It is vital that you are represented by someone that you can trust, and who you are confident will do everything in their professional ability to put forward your case in a proper and appropriate manner to ensure that you get the best outcome possible in your circumstances. Contact us now for more information.