How does it affect me if I am charged with a sexual offence?
If you have been arrested and charged with a sexual offence such as sexual assault, Orangeville’s Richard Allman Law Office has the expertise and proven track record to help you build a successful defence. Sexual offences are serious criminal matters. Even an accusation of a sexual offence must be taken very seriously as an allegation on its own can severely damage your personal and professional reputation, even if it is proved to be false. If you are ultimately convicted of a sexual offence, the penalties can be extreme and will have a significant impact on many aspects of your life. Here is what you need to know about the potential consequences of a sexual offence charge.
What are the penalties if I am convicted of a sexual offence like sexual assault?
Orangeville and Brampton residents charged with sexual offences (including sexual assault, aggravated sexual assault, invitation to sexual touching, and sexual interference) turn to our defence lawyer for clear legal advice and strong representation. Sexual offence charges are difficult to defend on your own and the risk of serious punishment is simply too high. In addition to the damage to your reputation, these are some of the penalties and ways you may be affected if you are charged and convicted of a sexual offence:
- Lengthy, and in some cases, mandatory, jail terms. Punishment in Ontario for sexual offences can range from 6 months in jail to 25 years in prison. The type of sexual offence you are charged with, and whether the offence is tried as an indictable offence or a summary offence, will impact the minimum possible sentence. Some sex offences in Canada’s Criminal Code carry minimum mandatory jail sentences upon conviction.
- Criminal record. Regardless of whether you pled guilty or are found guilty at trial, a conviction will likely result in a criminal record that can damage your employment options (resulting in loss of your current job or making it difficult for you to apply for other jobs), restrict your ability to travel outside of Canada, and prevent you from obtaining a licence to own a gun.
- Registration on the National Sex Offender Registry. If you are convicted of a designated sexual offence, it is mandatory that your name and information be added to the Sexual Offender Information Registration Act (“SOIRA”) database and that you comply with the SOIRA requirements for a period of 10 years or 20 years or for the remainder of your life, depending upon the maximum term of imprisonment for the offence and the number of offences of which you are convicted.
- Registration on Ontario’s Sex Offender Registry. There is also provincial legislation (“Christopher’s Law”) that creates an OntarioSex Offender Registry which requires anyone convicted of a designated sex offence in Ontario to register with the police as a designated sex offender for a period of 10 years or for life, depending on the nature and number of convictions involved.
- Limited employment and volunteer opportunities. A criminal record can cause you to lose your job and make it difficult to find another. In addition to the problems caused by having a criminal record, you may face additional court-ordered restrictions if convicted ofa sexual offence involving a person under the age of 16. The court might order that you not be employed or volunteer in any way that would involve being in a position of trust to a person younger than 16 (for example, working as a teacher, coaching a team, or volunteering at your own child’s school).
- Travel restrictions and revocation of passport. As mentioned above, a criminal conviction for sexual offences will cause travel and mobility issues. It is unlikely that you will be able to cross the border to the US if you have been convicted of a sexual offence. The Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship can refuse to give you a passport or revoke your passport if reasonable grounds exist to believe that the refusal or revocation is necessary to prevent the commission of an offence in relation to sexual offences against children outside Canada.
- Immigration implications including deportation. A permanent resident will lose their permanent residence status and face deportation from Canada if they become inadmissible on grounds of serious criminality (which for immigration purposes means when a person is convicted in Canada of a crime with a possible sentence of 10 or more years imprisonment, regardless of the sentence the person actually received).
- Inability to be granted a pardon. Pardons and Record Suspensions are not granted if you have been convicted of a sexual offence against a minor or if you have more than three convictions where you received a jail sentence of more than two years.
How will a criminal defence lawyer help me if I am charged with a sexual offence?
Richard A. Allman, an experienced Orangeville sexual assault defence lawyer, takes the time to ensure that his clients understand the range of potential consequences of a conviction and all of the defence options so that they can make a fully informed decision about the best plan of action. The defence options that are in your best interests will depend on the facts and circumstances of your case, so it is best to speak to a lawyer as soon as possible, even if you have not yet been charged. A skilled criminal defence lawyer will protect your rights and carefully review the case against you, looking for mitigating factors, ways to dismantle the case and exclude evidence, and have charges against you reduced or dropped.
Get legal advice from an experienced Orangeville sexual assault lawyer
Allegations of sexual assault and other sexual offences must be taken seriously. If you have been charged with a sexual offence you need answers, and you need them fast. Orangeville’s Richard Allman Law Office is available to help and provides emergency assistance 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Contact Richard Allman today by calling 519-940-0415.