As the sexual offences bill submissions continue the Star News brought this to our attention today.
Activist says ...
• Outdated laws only prohibit buggery of creatures
Jamaican animal rights activist, Pamela Lawson, is crying shame on what she calls Jamaica's old-fashioned laws which allow for people to have sexual relations with animals as long as the animal is not penetrated or harmed.
The issue came to the fore when a man was hauled before the Supreme Court of Canada on multiple charges of sexual offences against his stepdaughters and one count of bestiality. However, the bestiality charge was thrown out because he did not penetrate the animal.
The court documents, which identified the man as D.L.W., stated that he tried to induce sexual intercourse between one of his stepdaughters and the family's dog. When that didn't work, he spread peanut butter on her vagina and took photographs while the dog licked it off. He later asked her to do it again so he could make a video.
Despite the man's actions, Justice Thomas Cromwell ruled that the man was not guilty of inciting bestiality, because according to Canada's law, bestiality only occurs where there is penetration.
The laws are similar in Jamaica, and under section 76 of the Offences Against the Person Act, persons can be imprisoned for buggery of a person or animal.
However, the issue of sexual abuse of animals is not addressed elsewhere in Jamaica's laws, technically allowing for Jamaicans to legally engage in various types of sexual relations with animals, once the animals are not harmed or penetrated.
Director of the Jamaica Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, Pamela Lawson, told THE STAR that she believes all forms of sexual relations between humans and animals are "offensive and unacceptable." She said the laws need to be amended to address loopholes which allow such acts.
"I don't think it should only be an animal right activist who should be upset by the ruling. I think these actions are generally resented by society because it is just not right," Lawson said, adding that the police should be notified when these things happen.
Attorney-at-law Hugh Wildman supported Lawson's view, stressing that the laws as it relates to the sexual abuse of animals should be amended to reflect current happenings.
"As it is now, you have to prove penetration for a bestiality charge. The law has to keep in touch with modern trends that did not exist when the laws were created," Wildman said.