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Statutory Interpretation - This essay will look to discuss the legal issues raised by the facts of this case.

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Statutory Interpretation Coursework This essay will look to discuss the legal issues raised by the facts of this case. To prove the defendant is liable for a breech under section 1 of the act it will be demonstrated that the literal rule of statutory interpretation should take precedent and that there has also been a breech of the Sexual Offences Act 1985 (SOA). This is the assumption that the decision of a court should be based upon the laws set by legislature, not for court to alter these words to suit each occasion. In R v Inhabitants of Ramsgate, Bayley, J stated "It is very desirable in all cases to adhere to the words of an Act of Parliament, "1. This was affirmed in judgment of the case R v The Judges of the City of London Court "If the words of an Act are clear you must follow them, ...The court has nothing to do with the question whether the legislature has committed an absurdity"2. ...read more.


If we apply the literal rule of statutory interpretation, Giles would be in breech of s.1 as the section forbids "the making of repeated approaches to women in an area known to be frequented by prostitutes". Giles admits stopping his car to speak to women. If the literal rule is applied, in an area frequented by prostitutes, this would constitute an offence no matter of the nature of the women with whom he was talking. However the defence would argue it inappropriate to convict Giles under the Act. The golden rule, or the mischief rule, are both tools of statutory interpretation which could be invoked. The Golden rule is defined by Parke B, Becke v Smith "adhere to the ordinary meaning of the words ... unless that is at variance with the intention of the legislature ...or leads to any manifest absurdity or repugnance, in which case the language may be varied"5. ...read more.


for the purpose of prostitution; the remedy parliament resolved was this act; and the true reason of the remedy was to detract from prostitution, not to apprehend those looking for directions. It would also be argued that the Act is incompatible with the European Convention on Human Rights; Article 11 s.1 s "Everyone has the right to freedom ...of association with others"7. Restraining one from exercising the right they are afforded by stopping them "making approaches to women" would contravene this as the new act does not discriminate as too what the purpose of these approaches should be. 1 R v Inhabitants of Ramsgate (1827) 6 B&C 712 2 R v The Judges of the City of London Court [1892] 1 QB 273, 290 3 Hill v East and West India Dock Co (1884)9 App Cas 448 4 Sexual Offences Act 1985 s.1 (1) (a) 5 Becke v Smith (1836) 2 M&W 195 6 (1584) 3 Coke Rep 7a 7 European Convention on Human Rights article 7 (s.1) ...read more.

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