"Currently as it stands the legal definition for rape is:
The Sexual Offences Act 2003 defines rape in its first section, which reads:
“(1) A person (A) commits an offence if—
(a) he intentionally penetrates the vagina, anus or mouth of another person (B) with his penis,
(b) B does not consent to the penetration.."
The current definition means that sex without consent does not always constitute rape. When a woman forces another person into sex she is not charged with rape which goes against rape crisis campaigns which state "no consent is rape"."
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There seem to be many similar, but at the same time, different meanings to the term "rape", depending where you look up the meaning of the word. A couple of examples are below:
Dictionary.Reference.com states "the unlawful compelling of a person through physical force or duress to have sexual intercourse."
Oxford Dictionary refers to rape as "A crime, typically committed by a man, of forcing another person to have sexual intercourse with the offender against their will".
So, AVP, where does this come in?
In UK Law, as defined by the SoA 2003 as stated above, is gender specific, ie "he intentionally penetrates the vagina, anus or mouth of another person (B) with his penis" Under UK Law therefore, only a male can commit the offence of rape on either gender. If a female commits the offense of forcing another person into sex, it is either defined by law as Assault by penetration (even though, again, the SoA 2003 starts their definition with He), or Causing a person to engage in sexual activity without consent (again with the He). By having separate distinction between genders, and by having legislation named as this, it minimises the offense committed by a female from Rape to a more general type of "Sexual Assault".
CPS Guidelines have both offenses ("Rape" and "Causing a person to engage in sexual activity without consent", which as stated in this link is "a female equivalent of the offence of rape") as Indictable Only offenses, both which carry a maximum of Life Imprisonment, so why the difference in the naming of the offence?
Having the crime of rape described in this way, (ie can only be committed by a male), is prejudicial to any victim that has been raped by a female perpetrator. Having the crime that has been committed against them lumped together with any other type of "sexual assault" minimises the seriousness of the crime and this needs to change.
If both the type of offense is the same (indictable only), and the punishment for offenders supposedly being the same (maximum of life), where is the issue with having the one offense of rape which covers both genders of offender?
Having a quick search online, brought up this story from 2012 from the USA, which includes "a significant expansion of the FBI’s definition of rape, which will now cover several forms of sexual assault and include male rape.", which shows that this can be done.
Rape is rape, rape should legally mean one person (no matter what gender) forcing another person (no matter what gender) into sex. The end result is the same for victims - no difference - so the crime should be the same. Until it is, victims of female rapists will always have the crime committed against them trivialised and society will always view this as a lesser crime.
And, if you haven't yet, please sign the petition at the top.