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NPA to appeal Sex Act ruling

National Prosecuting Authority will now appeal a Sexual Offences Act ruling.

National Prosecuting Authority. Picture: EWN

CAPE TOWN - The National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) on Thursday said it was given permission to appeal against a recent Sexual Offences Act judgment.

The controversial ruling involved a man accused of fondling a woman without her consent.

A Riversdale magistrate declared that the man could not be sentenced, because there were no penalty clauses for the crime.

While the NPA appeals the decision, Parliament is also moving quickly amend the loopholes in the act.

The ruling could have devastating repercussions.

While the bill specifies offences for perpetrators, it leaves the penalties imposed on offenders to the discretion of the courts.

On Thursday, ANC Chief Whip Mathole Motshekga introduced the bill to the committee, conceding the Sexual Offences Act needs changing.

"Since promulgation, certain provisions in the act have been identified as potentially defective."

Members of Parliament are concerned the ruling could see the floodgates open, with sexual offenders applying to have their sentences and convictions overturned.

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