Acts of Gross Indecency Key Facts

Maximum Penalty

  • First offence of gross indecency is three years imprisonment.
  • Any subsequent offence of gross indecency is five years imprisonment.

Possible Defences

  • Have a mental impairment; or
  • Have an identification dispute

What Is The Charge of Acts of Gross Indecency?

It is an offence to commit an act of gross indecency with or in the presence of any person under the age of sixteen years.

It is also an offence to incite or procure a person to engage in an act of gross indecency with the accused.

A person will be guilty of an offence regardless of the act being committed in private or in public.

Indecency has been defined interpreted by various cases to include:

‘Any act which an ordinary decent person would find shocking, disgusting, or revolting however it needs to have a sexual overtone or nexus. No contact is essential and it has been held that it is a matter for the jury as a question of fact as to what should constituted indecency.’

What Is The Penalty For Acts of Gross Indecency?

The maximum penalty for a first offence of gross indecency is three years imprisonment.

The maximum penalty for any subsequent offence of gross indecency is five years imprisonment.

What Are The Possible Defences For Acts of Gross Indecency?

It may be a defence to the charge if you:

  • Have a mental impairment; or
  • Have an identification dispute

Consent is not a defence under this section of the Act.

What The Prosecution Must Prove

The prosecution must prove that:

  • The act was of gross indecency and
  • in the presence of a child or
  • The defendant procured another to commit an act of gross indecency;
  • in the presence of a child.

Case law has held that the prosecution only have to prove that a child was present and it is not necessary to show that the child saw or was aware of the act.

What Court will hear the Matter

This offence will be dealt with in the District Court of South Australia.

Case Studies For Similar Offences

We have defended thousands of criminal cases over many decades and constantly achieve outstanding results for our clients. Please view our results by clicking the cases below:

Possess Child Pornography

Possess Child Pornography

Reference: 1500820

Indecent Assault

Indecent Assault

Indecent Assault

Indecent Assault

Withdrawal of Aggravated Indecent Assault

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Case Study – Sex Offenders Register

Case Study – Sex Offenders Register

Reference: 1700430

Case Study – Serious Sexual Assault

Case Study – Serious Sexual Assault

Reference: 1500395

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