Draft bill to toughen sexual abuse penalties in Turkey
ANKARA - Hürriyet Daily News
The government has completed its work on legal regulations that will increase the penalty for sex-related crimes, paving the way for the chemical castration of suspects convicted of child abuse. DAILY NEWS photo / Selahattin SÖNMEZThe Turkish government has completed its work on legal regulations that will increase the penalty for sex-related crimes, paving the way for the chemical castration of suspects convicted of child abuse.
Parents who force their children into marriage will face between one and three years in prison with the new regulations, which will also increase the penalties for sexual abuse committed in the digital environment or mobile phones.
The regulations are being prepared by the Justice Ministry, the Family and Social Policies Ministry and the European Union Ministry, under the direction of Deputy Prime Minister Bekir Bozdağ, upon instructions from Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan.
If sexual abuse is committed by mail, email, the Internet or mobile phone, then the penalty will be increased by half.
As part of the new regulations, the term “incest” has entered the Turkish Penal Code for the first time. People found guilty of the crime could face between five years and 12 years in prison.
The courts will also no longer seek a forensic medicine report on whether the sexual assault victim’s psychological and physical well-being has been damaged in a move designed to prevent intrusive questioning of those subjected to such abuse.
If a sexual assault is committed at a place where crowds gather for reasons such as a concert, rally, or New Year’s celebrations, then the penalty will be increased by half. Under the present law, people convicted of such crimes face between four and 10 years in prison under the Turkish Penal Code’s 102nd Article.
Chemical castration could be introduced
Suspects convicted of sexually assaulting minors could also be subjected to medical treatment, in a move that some analysts say could open the way to chemical castration in the Turkish Penal Code.
Individuals convicted of sexually abusing children will also be able to enter a program for their treatment; after release, meanwhile, they could be banned from residing near their victim or being at a place close to the victim.
Such suspects might also be prohibited from working at places that will bring them into contact with children.
Suspects convicted of sexual assault will serve three-fourths of their sentence as part of the new regulation, up from two-thirds under the present law.
Those found guilty of basic sexual assaults will face between 4.5 months and three years in prison, up from three months to two years under the present law.
The penalty for more serious sexual assaults will increase from two-to-seven years to four-to-10 years.
When the sexual assault victim is a minor, the punishment will rise from three-to-eight years to six-to-10 years.
Suspects convicted of aggravated sexual assault, meanwhile, will face between 10 and 20 years in jail, rather than the current seven to 12 years.
When the victim of an aggravated sexual assault is a minor, then penalty will increase from eight-to-15 years to 12-to-20 years.