While the term “revenge porn” is not the term used in the bill (Criminal Code (Non-Consensual Sharing of Intimate Images) Amendment Bill 2018), the message is clear. Harmful behaviour is no longer tolerated. Queensland has taken a stand against the increase of non-consensual sharing of intimate images.
Queensland Attorney-General and Minister for Justice Yvette D’Ath has advised “The government recognises that the non-consensual sharing of intimate images covers a broad range of conduct, relationships, motivations and modes of distribution,”
The bill to change the law was introduced in or about 2018. On 13 February 2019, the changes to the Queensland Criminal Code were passed through parliament and made into law.
A brief summary of such an important law includes that (circumstance dependent);
- People who share sexual or intimate images or videos of another person without their consent could now spend up to three years’ in jail in Queensland; and
- Please who threat to distribute intimate or prohibited images or recordings is also a misdemeanour with a maximum of 3 years prison;
The new law includes that;
- consent means – consent freely and voluntarily given by a person with the cognitive capacity to give the consent.
- Intimate image, of a person, means – a moving or still image that depicts;
- the person engaged in an intimate sexual activity that is not ordinarily done in public; or
- the person’s genital or anal region, when it is bare or covered only by underwear; or
- if the person is female or a transgender or intersex person who identifies as female—the person’s bare breasts; and
- includes an image that has been altered (digitally) to appear to show any of the things mentioned above, even if the thing has been digitally obscured if the person is depicted in a sexual way.
- prohibited visual recording, of a person, means;
- a visual recording of the person, in a private place or engaging in a private act, made in circumstances where a reasonable adult would expect to be afforded privacy; or
- a visual recording of the person’s genital or anal region, when it is bare or covered only by underwear, made in circumstances where a reasonable adult would expect to be afforded privacy in relation to that region.
Distribute the images and pay the price
It is now clear. Section 223 of the Queensland Criminal Code provides that it is an offence to distribute intimate images of a person without the person’s consent in a way that would reasonably cause the person distress.
It is irrelevant whether the person distributing the images intended to cause distress or actually caused distress.
If a court finds a person guilty of these offences, it can order that the images or recordings be removed, deleted or destroyed within a stated timeframe. If the offender fails to comply with the order, they can be found guilty of a further offence. Such offence is punishable by a term of imprisonment up to two (2) years.
This will be an increasing area of law so watch this space. This law has been passed in Queensland, which means the jurisdiction of the law is in Queensland. For matters outside Queensland, Commonwealth Law may apply.
If you have been subject to inappropriate images and video’s being sent via text, email, social media or the internet. We highly recommend and also implore you to contact your local Police Station in addition to your State and the Federal Safety Commissioner.
If you are concerned about actions against you, legal advice should be obtained about your specific circumstances, in addition to contacting the Government entities. You can also seek counselling and advice from Kids Helpline on 1800 55 1800 (if you are under 25), or Lifeline on 13 11 14.
The information in the Tropical Lawyer articles are provided as guidance only and legal advice should be sought