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Consent a question in some sexual assault cases

While every criminal charge has the potential to be complicated, some are more difficult to defend against than others. An example of this is where sex crime charges are concerned. In some cases there may be a question as to whether the accused actually committed an act that constitutes sexual assault.

This situation may arise if the accused admits to engaging in a sexual activity with the other person and the question is not whether the incident occurred. Instead, it's whether the activity was engaged in with the consent of each party. This distinction is important since if consent was present, it is not sexual assault.

A reality TV star is currently facing this issue in Toronto. In addition to sexual assault, the man was accused of drugging a woman. The incident allegedly occurred following an evening out when the couple, who were not previously acquainted, returned to the home of a friend of the accused. Before heading to that home the couple was out consuming alcohol. Prior to having sex, he said the two made out on the condo's balcony.

The alleged victim indicated that after consuming alcohol the accused gave her, she felt incapacitated. Another woman, in a previous situation, claimed the same thing happened to her before he sexually assaulted her. The man denies drugging either of the women and he was never charged in the previous case.

The outcome of this case is not yet clear. In large part it will likely depend upon the credibility of the parties involved and witnesses who testify at trial. Because the consequences of a conviction can be harsh, in situations like this it is vital to work with a criminal defence lawyer.

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