Indecent Assault (Repealed Offence)

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1970 Criminal Code

Indecent assault on female

149. (1) Every one who indecently assaults a female person is guilty of an indictable offence and is liable to imprisonment for five years and to be whipped.

Consent by false representations

(2) An accused who is charged with an offence under subsection (1) may be convicted if the evidence establishes that the accused did anything to the female person with her consent that, but for her consent, would have been an indecent assault, if her consent was obtained by false and fraudulent representations as to the nature and quality of the act.
1953-54, c. 51, s. 141.

Indecent assault on male

156. Every male person who assaults another person with intent to commit buggery or who indecently assaults another male person is guilty of an indictable offence and is liable to imprisonment for ten years and to be whipped.
1953-54, c. 51, s. 148.

This was repealed in An Act to amend the Criminal Code in relation to sexual offences and other offences against the person and to amend certain other Acts in relation thereto or in consequence thereof, S.C. 1980-81-82-83, c. 125, s. 8.


The term "indecent assault" was not defined in the Code. The case law defined it as "an assault that is committed in circumstances of indecency, or as sometimes described, an assault with acts of indecency".[1] What constitutes "indecent" is a question of fact and is determined on a case-by-case basis.[2] Determination "will depend upon an objective view of the facts and circumstances in relation to the actual assault, and not upon the mental state of the accused"[3]

  1. R v Swietlinski, 1980 CanLII 53 (SCC), [1980] 2 SCR 956 (SCC), per McIntyre J
  2. Swietlinski, ibid.
  3. Swietlinski, ibid., at para 17