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1 The criminal law regulates sexuality It does so not only in thespecific offences it defines and punishes but also by setting the normsby which all of society is supposed to operateCritically discuss this proposition by examining recent cases of sexualassault where teachers have engaged in sexual activities with studentseg Karen Ellis Gavin Hopper etc Are there differences in howfemale and male teachers have been dealt with If so why do you thinkthese differences ariseAs a society we are obsessed with sex not only in the intimate senseof the word but also in our fear of it Our fear as a society isevident in the criminal code Sexual offences are defined under theCommonwealth Crimes Act 1914 and the Commonwealth Criminal Code Act1995 Identified within these acts are at least eight differentlegislative provisions defining sexual misconduct Model Criminal Code1999 Sexual assault sexual interference sexual exploitationinvitation to sexual touching are just some specific offences that aredefined and punishable by our legal system In addition to thesespecific offences the criminal law also establishes norms by which oursociety is intended to operate by labeling certain crimes as crimesagainst morality Included within this group are offences related toprostitution pornography incest as well as child sexual abuse Hayeset al 2010 p 1 As a society we want to punish sexual offendersbecause we want to protect ourselves and especially our children Whilstmale sexual offenders make up the majority - of 853 sex offendersadjudicated in Magistrates Courts across Australia in 2004-05 841 weremen - it is important to recognize that this is not a crime committedexclusively by males Increasingly police are arresting women for sexualcrimes Hayes et al 2010 p 2 Despite the gender neutrality ofsexual offences in Australia female sexual offenders appear to be onthe receiving end of gender biased treatment by adjudicators Two caseswhich exemplify the differing ways in which female sex offenders aredealt with differently to their male counterparts will form the focus ofthis essay The first is that of
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