The term “historic sexual offence” refers to an offence committed some years ago, often many years earlier. If a person is being investigated for a historic sexual offence this can progress into a very serious situation with the risk of a custodial sentence being imposed if found guilty. If you are facing such a situation please get in touch without delay and, if possible, before a formal charge is made. It is critical that your representation is experienced, professional and highly competent. Keith J Tuck can offer these core competencies.
Reputations can be quickly and irreparably damaged by rumours and speculation surrounding any allegations.
The impact of even unsubstantiated accusations can have a detrimental effect on the accused and the family so it is important to act promptly.
The Law and Admissibility of Evidence
The current law is governed by the Sexual Offences (Scotland) Act 2009 but there is a fundamental principle that the law is not applied retrospectively. This means that the charges brought against you will be based on the law at the time of the alleged offence and your representation needs to be experts on both the current and historic law.
The cases are invariably complex, particularly when the allegations relate to an offence many years ago. The alleged offences are likely to have taken place in private with no witnesses and no charges brought at the time. A feature of Scots law is the need for corroboration which presents a hurdle for prosecutors to overcome. If accused of a number of offences and the prosecution believes there is sufficient evidence, the doctrine of mutual corroboration may be argued. It means that a number of offences witnessed by only one person can be grouped together to show a pattern of behaviour and then could be used in a court case. The doctrine is complex in practice so it is essential to have experienced legal representation to defend this form of “mutual corroboration”.
The credibility of the defendant and complainant is likely to be a key factor in any case.
Contact Our Sexual Offence Solicitors in Glasgow, Scotland
There has been an increase in the prosecutions for historic sexual offences with seemingly more alleged victims coming forward. The historic requirement for corroboration in the law in Scotland is under review, possibly removing the requirement for corroboration, opening the possibility of more prosecutions. Keith J Tuck, Solicitors, are highly experienced in the criminal law field and are accustomed to dealing with highly complex and sensitive cases involving the handling of large amounts of evidence. An allegation of a historic sex offence can be a particularly challenging area of the law. It is vital that you appoint a criminal defence lawyer with expertise in both the historic and present law to achieve the best possible outcome for you. Our criminal lawyers operate in Glasgow and the surrounding areas. If you are being investigated for a historic sexual offence please call us today on 0141 471 9296, or contact us via our online contact form.