Views sought on voyeurism offences

July 8, 2020

The Government today announced the launch of a three-month public consultation on the proposed introduction of offences against voyeurism, intimate prying, non-consensual photography of intimate parts and the distribution of related images.


It made the statement after accepting the recommendations of the Law Reform Commission in its report on voyeurism and non-consensual upskirt photography.


The Government said it has proposed to introduce criminal offences against voyeurism and non-consensual photography of intimate parts, including the taking of still photographs and videos. It also proposed to introduce a criminal offence of intimate prying irrespective of the purpose.


To give further protection to victims, the Government also proposed the introduction of a criminal offence against the distribution of surreptitious intimate images obtained from the above proposed offences and another criminal offence against the non-consensual distribution of relevant images in cases where consent was given for the taking of such intimate images but not for their distribution.


Additionally, the Government proposed to include all these new offences in the specified list of sexual offences under the Sexual Conviction Record Check Scheme.


There is currently no specific offence against voyeurism or non-consensual photography of intimate parts, such as upskirt photography. These acts can only be prosecuted with other charges such as loitering and disorder in public places.


The penalties are relatively lower and not commensurate with the severity of voyeurism and surreptitious intimate photography, which often violate the victim's right to privacy and sexual autonomy as well as cause long-term distress, humiliation, harassment and stress to the victim.


People can express their views by emailing [email protected] on or before October 7.


Click here for the consultation paper.

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