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Sexual Offences

The Sexual Offences Act 2003 updated the law, much of which dated back to 1956.

The main provisions of the Act include the following:

  • Rape is widened to include oral penetration
  • Significant changes to the issue of consent
  • Specific offences relating to children under 13, 16 and 18
  • Offences to protect vulnerable persons with a mental disorder
  • Other miscellaneous offences
  • Strengthening the notification requirements and providing new civil preventative orders

Find out more about how we prosecute sexual offences

Child sex abusers sentenced at Norwich Crown Court


One woman and two men convicted of prolonged sexual and physical abuse of children have been sentenced today.

Marie Black, Jason Adams and Michael Rogers were convicted in August 2015 at Norwich Crown Court of 44 charges.

Black, who faced 26 charges including conspiracy to rape, sexual assault and child cruelty, was convicted of 23 charges. Also convicted were Jason Adams, who was found guilty of seven counts including sexual assault, rape and engaging in sexual activity, and Michael Rogers who was convicted on all 14 charges including child cruelty, rape, and conspiracy to rape.

Head of the Complex Casework Unit for the CPS in the East of England, Nigel Pilkington, said: "Cases involving allegations against children are among the most challenging that we deal with and as prosecutors we are aware of how traumatic it can be for child victims and witnesses to give evidence about such events.

"We arranged for the children to give evidence during the trial by video link and the court agreed with our request that the children be given plenty of breaks whilst giving evidence and being cross-examined. We would like to pay tribute to the victims in this case for their courage in coming forward to the authorities and assisting the prosecution.

"The court heard details from the prosecution of the acts carried out by these convicted defendants against five children over a five year period. The jury have listened to some very distressing accounts of what these young children suffered and had to consider each charge against the defendants. We would like to thank them for their diligence in this case.

"The sentences handed down today show how seriously child abuse offences are taken by the courts and also sends out the strong message that the courts will look to protect vulnerable victims against those who prey on them for their own sexual gratification."


Sentencing details:

  • Marie Black: life imprisonment
  • Jason Adams: 24 years imprisonment
  • Michael Rogers: 24 years imprisonment
  • Carol Stadler, who was found guilty of actual bodily harm, was also sentenced today to six months imprisonment


Notes to Editors

  1. For media enquiries call the CPS Press Office on 020 3357 0906; Out of Hours Pager 07699 781 926
  2. The CPS consists of 13 Areas in total, each headed by a Chief Crown Prosecutor (CCP). In addition, there are three national casework divisions: Specialist Fraud (formerly Central Fraud and Welfare, Rural & Health Divisions), Special Crime & Counter Terrorism and Organised Crime. CPS Direct is a 'virtual' 14th Area which provides charging decisions to all police forces and other investigators across England and Wales - it operates twenty-four hours, seven days a week, 365 days a year.
  3. At 31 March 2014 we employed a workforce of approximately 6237 staff (full time equivalent), including around 2226 prosecutors and 3629 caseworkers and administrators. Further information can be found on our website:
  4. The CPS, together with ACPO and media representatives, has developed a Protocol for the release of prosecution material to the media. This sets out the type of prosecution material that will normally be released, or considered for release, together with the factors we will take into account when considering requests. Read the Protocol for the release of prosecution material to the media.