UCL Faculty of Laws


Reforming the Relationship between Sexual Consent, Deception and Mistake

24 May 2023, 6:00 pm–7:30 pm

Truth and lies

A Statute Law Society event hosted by UCL Laws

Event Information

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UCL Laws Events


Moot court, UCL Faculty of Laws,
Bentham House, Endsleigh Gardens

About this event

James lies to Mary to induce sexual activity; James knows that Mary would not consent if he told the truth. Whether James currently commits an offence within the Sexual Offences Act 2003 is uncertain, and depends upon a series of tests that appear unfit for purpose.

In its latest report, published in 2023, the Criminal Law Reform Now Network has recommended the creation of a new offence to tackle cases of this kind – ‘inducing a person to engage in sexual activity by deception’ – that focuses on a defendant’s awareness and reasons for deception. The CLRNN recommendations follow a consultation period in which ten different options for reform were canvassed.

The panel is made up of CLRNN Committee members, including Paul Jarvis who led the deception project, as well as John Child and Jonathan Rogers who co-direct the Network.


  • Prof. John Child, Professor of Criminal Law, Birmingham Law School
  • Paul Jarvis, 6KBW College Hill
  • Dr Jonathan Rogers, Co-Deputy Director of Cambridge Centre for Criminal Justice, University of Cambridge

Lady Justice Whipple DBE (Chair)

About the speakers

Dr Jonathan Rogers is an associate professor at Fitzwilliam College, University of Cambridge. He worte his doctorate at UCL on the subject of exculpatory defences in criminal law, and then started my academic career at Brunel University (2000) before moving to UCL as a lecturer in 2002. He left UCL, as an Associate Professor in Criminal Justice, in 2018 to take up his present position at Cambridge. During the end of his time at UCL, he directed the Centre of Criminal Law and joined the Editorial Board of the Criminal Law Review.

John Child is Professor of Criminal Law at the University of Birmingham. He specialises in criminal law, doctrine and theory, and the relationship between criminal law and neuroscience. John co-authors a leading criminal law textbook, Smith, Hogan and Ormerod’s Essentials of Criminal Law, as well as co-directing the Criminal Law Reform Now Network. John has been at Birmingham since 2018; becoming a Professor of Criminal Law in 2022. Prior to this, John held posts at Sussex Law School (2013-2018); Oxford Brookes Law School (2010-13); and the Criminal Law Team at the Law Commission for England and Wales (2007-8). John has held visiting positions at Boston University; the University of Birmingham; as well as the Max Planck Institute for Foreign and International Criminal Law in Freiburg.

Paul Jarvis is a barrister at 6KBW. Paul is a first-rate advocate with a thriving practice as both a leader and a junior in cases of substance and complexity. He is highly recommended in both Chambers and Partners and the Legal 500 in the categories of ‘Crime’, ‘Fraud’ and ‘Proceeds of Crime’. Paul is a Junior Treasury Counsel at the Central Criminal Court, appointed by the Attorney General to prosecute the most serious offences including murder and terrorism. Alongside prosecuting, Paul maintains a busy private defence practice, mainly in the areas of corporate and financial crime, cybercrime, serious sexual offending and motoring offences, where his expertise is sought at all stages of proceedings. Paul has a particular specialism with regards to money laundering and the proceeds of crime.

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