Rape and Sexual Assault

Under the definition of the Sexual Offences (Scotland) Act 2009, rape is defined as:

'penetration of the vagina, anus or mouth by the penis without consent.  However, there is a range of sexual assault and abuse which does not fit with the legal definition of rape.  These can be just as distressing and have just as much of an impact'.

One in ten women in Scotland has experienced rape and one in five has had someone try to make them have sex against their will.  (Source, https://www2.gov.scot/Resource/0047/00474316.pdf).

In 2018/2019, 2,293 rapes and 133 attempted rapes were reported to the police in Scotland. (Source, Recorded Crime in Scotland 2018-19)

In the same period, 13,547 sexual offences were reported - this was an increase of 8%, from 12,487 sexual offences recorded in the previous year. (Source, Recorded Crime in Scotland 2018-19)

While figures for many crimes in Scotland are going down, for sexual offences they continue to rise.  Sexual crimes have increased each consecutive year since 2008/9 and now at the highest level since 1971.

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