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General Principles

A number of factors will determine the appropriate length of sentence within the range for a sexual assault. These include the age of the victim, the duration and frequency of the sexual assaults, the criminal record of the offender, the effects on the victim and the presence or absence of collateral violence or remorse. The court also noted that the ordinary range will be exceeded when the circumstances cry out for a more severe penalty: R v WY, 2015 ONCA 682 at para 8 

Domestic Sexual Assault

The sentence range for cases involving forced intercourse with a spouse is 21 months to 4 years. The cases at the lower end of the range involve single events: R v HE, 2015 ONCA 531 at paras 44-48; see generally R v SMC, 2017 ONCA 107 at para 6. In circumstances of repeated forced intercourse, a sentence of 18 months is manifestly unfit

Sexual Assault on Children 

In the case of an adult offender in a position of trust who sexually abused a child on a regular and persistent basis over substantial periods of time, a sentence of mid to upper single digit penitentiary terms is appropriate: R v RO, 2015 ONCA 814 at para 60; R v WY2015 ONCA 682 at para 9 [quote]

When the above-noted abuse involves full intercourse, anal or vaginal, and it is accompanied by other acts of physical violence, threats of physical violence, or other forms of extortion, upper single digit to low double digit penitentiary terms will generally be appropriate: R v WY2015 ONCA 682 at para 9 [quote]

In cases where the above-noted elements are accompanied by a pattern of severe psychological, emotional and physical brutalization, still higher penalties will be warranted: R v WY2015 ONCA 682 at para 9 [quote]

Where a father has committed repeated acts of incest with his daughter over many months, it will be highly unusual for the court to impose a penitentiary sentence of less than five to six years: R v WY2015 ONCA 682 at para 13 [quote]

Five years is not unfit in a case involving significant mitigating circumstances, including that: the offences occurred over a relatively compact period of time; the accused had no prior relationship with his daughter before she came to live with him; the accused did not employ physical violence, threats of violence or extortion; the accused pled guilty and expressed remorse and a desire for treatment; and any related criminal record was very dated: para 12 

A conviction for Internet luring will normally require a period of significant incarceration. A conditional sentence will only be appropriate in the rarest of cases: R v Rafiq, 2015 ONCA 768 at paras 1, 21, 27


For an accused who touched the complainant and raised her skirt while seated next to her on a public bus, a suspended sentence is appropriate: R v Hilan, 2015 ONCA 338

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