Japan -- Age of Consent

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[Cool Teen Sites]

JAPAN

Interesting review of Japanese Laws:   http://www.catwinternational.org/fb/Japan.html

 

Source: http://www.actwin.com/eatonohio/gay/world.htm

JAPAN LAWS: 1. Has no sodomy laws, the age of sexual consent for males ranges by local from age 13 to 17.
2. Bans open homosexuals from its military.
3. The Tokyo Metropolitan Government includes sexual orientation as a category protected from discrimination within its human rights guidelines. Ehime (in the south west district of Japan), also has human rights guidelines which mention lesbian and gay rights.


Source:  http://www.interpol.int/Public/Children/SexualAbuse/NationalLaws/

Japan - Japon - Japón               Tokyo

Law for Punishing Acts Related to Child Prostitution and Child Pornography, and for Protecting Children.
This is a temporary translated version of the New Law adopted by the Japanese Diet, in April 1999 related to
Child Prostitution, Child Pornography and Sexual Abuse of Children committed by Japanese nationals abroad.

Article 1 - Objective
The objective of this Law is to protect the rights of children by prescribing punishment for acts
related to child prostitution and child pornography, and by establishing measures including the
giving of appropriate protection to children who have suffered physically and/or mentally from the
said acts, in light of the fact that sexual exploitation and sexual abuse of children seriously infringe


I. Ages for legal purposes
Article 2 - Definitions
For the purpose of this Law, a "child" means a person under the age of 18 years.

Age of majority
The Article 3 of the Japanese Civil Code states that the age of majority is twenty (20) years old.

Age of consent for sexual activity
The Article 177 of the Penal Code puts the age of consent for sexual actitvity at thirteen (13) years.

Age of consent for marriage
Articles 731 and 737 of the Civil Code provides that the age of consent for marriage is eighteen (18)
years for men, and sixteen (16) for women.

But when a minor wants to get married, he or she needs the consent of his or her parents.

II. Rape
‘Rape’, Art. 177 Penal Code

" A person who, through violence or intimidation, has sexual intercourse with a female person of
not less than thirteen (13) years of age commits the crime of rape and shall be punished with
imprisonment at forced labour for a limited term of not less than two years. The same shall apply
to a person who has sexual intercourse with a female person under thirteen (13) years of age. "

‘Death or injury resulting from rape’, Art. 181 Penal Code
" A person who commits a crime provided in Articles 176 to 179 and thereby kills or injures
another shall be punished with imprisonment at forced labour for life or for not less than three
years. "

III. Other forms of child sex abuse
‘Indecency through compulsion’, Art. 176 Penal Code
" A person who, through violence or intimidation, commits an indecent act upon a male or female
person of not less than thirteen (13) years of age shall be punished with imprisonment at forced
labour for not less than six months nor more than seven years. The same shall apply to a person
who commits an indecent act upon a male or female person under thirteen (13) years of age. "
Common articles to rape and indecency

‘Constructive compulsory indecency and rape’, Art. 178 Penal Code
" A person who commits an indecent act upon or has sexual intercourse with another by taking
advantage of loss of consciousness or inability to resist, or by causing a loss of consciousness or
inability to resist, shall be punished in the same way as provided for in the preceding two
Articles. "
‘Attempts’, Art. 179 Penal Code
" Attempts of the crimes provided in the preceding three Articles shall be punished. "
‘Complaint’, Art. 180 Penal Code
" (1) The crimes provided in the preceding four Articles shall be prosecuted only on complaint.
(2)The provisions of the preceding paragraph shall not apply when the crimes mentioned in the
preceding four Articles are committed jointly by two or more persons who are on the scene of the
action. "

Article 34 of the Child Welfare Law
" Any person shall not do any of the following acts : …(6) act of inducing a minor to be engaged in
sexual activities … "
Inducing a minor who is less than eighteen (18) to be engaged in sexual activities is subject to
punishment under the Child Welfare Law. According to Japanese Court cases, " inducing a minor to
be engaged in sexual activities means an act of working on a minor to have intercourse or analogous
conducts ( including oral and anal sex) with him or her, or with someone else by exering influence on
the minor virually.

Article 12 of the Yamanashi Prefecture Ordinance concerning cleanup of neighborhood moral environment for
the protection and caring of minors
" Any person shall not have indecent sexual activities or obscene conduct with minors.
A person should not give instructions in or show activities given above to minors. "

Article 13 of the Yamanashi Prefecture Ordinance
" Any person shall not offer or make arrangements for a place knowing that assaults, indecent
sexual activities, obscene acts or gambling targeting involving minors will take place in the
place,… "

IV. Child prostitution
Article 2 - Definitions
For the purpose of the Law, "child prostitution" means the act of performing sexual intercourse, etc.
(i.e. sexual intercourse an act similar to sexual intercourse, or an act for the purpose of satisfying
one’s sexual curiosity, of touching genital organs, etc. (i.e. genital organs, anus and nipples; the
same shall apply hereinafter) of a child or of making a child touch one’s genital organs, etc.; the
same shall apply hereinafter) with a child in return for giving, or promising to give, a remuneration to
any of the persons listed below:
i. the child;
ii. the person who acts as an intermediary in sexual intercourse, etc. with the child;
iii. the protector of the child (i.e. a person who exercises parental power over the
child or who is the guardian or suchlike and who is taking actual care of the child;
the same shall apply hereinafter) or a person who has placed the child under his or
her supervision.

Article 4 - Child Prostitution
A person who commits child prostitution shall be punished with imprisonment with labor for not
more than three years or a fine of not more than one million yen.

Article 5 - Inter-mediation of Child Prostitution
1. A person who acts as an intermediary in child prostitution shall be punished with imprisonment
with labor for not more than three years or a fine not exceeding three million yen.

2. A person who, as his or her business, acts as an intermediary in child prostitution shall be
punished with imprisonment with labor for not more than five years and a fine not exceeding five
million yen.

Article 6 - Solicitation - Solicitation of Child Prostitution
1. A person who solicits another person to commit child prostitution for the purpose of
inter-mediating in child prostitution shall be punished with imprisonment with labor for not more
than three years or a fine not exceeding three million yen.

2. A person who, as his or her business, solicits another person to commit child prostitution for the
purpose mentioned in the preceding paragraph shall be punished with imprisonment with labor for
not more than five years and a fine not exceeding five million yen.

Article 8 - Trade, etc. in Children for the Purpose of Child Prostitution, and Suchlike
1. A person who buys or sells a child for the purpose of making the child be a party to sexual
intercourse, etc. in child prostitution, or for the purpose of producing child pornography by
depicting any of the poses provided for in items (i) to (iii) of paragraph 3 of Article 2 shall be
punished with imprisonment with labor for not less than one year and not more than ten years.

2. A Japanese national who, for any of the purposes mentioned in the preceding paragraph,
transports a child, who has been abducted, kidnapped, sold or bought in a foreign country, out of
that country shall be punished with imprisonment with labor for a limited term of not less than two
years.

3. Attempts of the crimes mentioned in the two preceding paragraphs shall be punished.

V. Child pornography
Article 2 - Definitions
For the purpose of this Law, "child pornography" means photos, videotapes and other visual
materials which:

i. depict, in a way that can be recognized visually, such a pose of a child relating to
sexual intercourse or an act similar to sexual intercourse with or by the child.

ii. depict, in a way that can be recognized visually, such a pose of a child relating to
the act of touching genital organs, etc. of the child or of having the child touch
someone else’s genital organs, etc. in order to arouse or stimulate the viewer’s sexual
desire; or

iii. depict, in a way that can be recognized visually, such a pose of a child who is
naked totally or partially in order to arouse or stimulate the viewer’s sexual desire.

In Japan, there is no law which criminalizes production, distribution and possession of child
pornography. However, Article 175 of the Penal Code generally prohibits and establishes a criminal
sanction for the distribution, sale, display and possession of obscene objects for the purpose of
commercialisation, and Article 34 of the Child Welfare Law Sanctions concerns, among other
things, engaging a child in promiscuous habit or illicit intercourse. In interpretation of these
statutes, it should be noted that simple nudity without the exposure of genitals is not generally
deemed obscene nor promiscuous.

In the same way, Article 21 of the Customs Tariff Law prohibits the importation of " … books,
pictures, carved materials, and other items which may impair security or public moral … ", as well
as Article 63 of the Employment Security Law which provides that " …any person falling under
the following items shall be subject to a penal servitude not more than ten years and not less than
one year or a fine not more than one million yen and not less than fifty thousand : one who
conducts or egages in an emplyment exchange, labor supply, by means of violence, intimidation,
imprisonment or any other restraint on mental or physical freedom ; one who conducts or engages
in an employment exchange, labor recruitment or labor supply for the purpose of soliciting jobs
with an intention of inducing workers to do works injurious to the public health or morals. "

The general prohibition mentioned above applies to the transmission of pornography through TV or
computers. Article 3-2 of the Broadcasting Law further prohibits programs harming good morals.

Article 7 - Distribution, etc. of Child pornography
1. A person who distributes, sells, lends as a business, or displays in public, child pornography
shall be punished with imprisonment with labor for not more than three years or a fine not exceeding
three million yen.

2. A person who produces, possesses, transports, imports to or exports from Japan child
pornography for the purpose of conducting any of the acts mentioned in the preceding paragraph
shall be punished with the same penalty as is described in the said paragraph.

3. A Japanese national who imports to or exports from a foreign country child pornography for the
purpose of conducting any of the acts mentioned in paragraph 1 of this article shall be punished
with the same penalty as is described in the said paragraph.

Article 9 - Awareness of the Age of the Child

No one who uses a child shall be exempt from the punishments specified in Articles 5 to 8 on the
grounds of not having been aware of the age of the child excepting cases where there is no
negligence.

Article 10 - Crimes Committed by Japanese Nationals Outside Japan
The crimes specified in Articles 4 to 6, paragraphs 1 and 2 of Article 7, and paragraphs 1 and 3
(limited to the part thereof which relates to paragraph 1) of Article 8 shall be dealt with according to
the provision of Article 3 of the Penal Code (Law No. 45 of 1907).

Article 14 - Education, Enlightenment, Research and Study
1. In light of the fact that such acts as child prostitution and the distribution of child pornography
would seriously affect the mental and/or physical growth of children, the State and local public
entities shall, to allow for the prevention of such acts, endeavor to educate and enlighten the public
to deepen their understanding of the rights of children.

2. The State and local public entities shall endeavor to promote researches and studies that can help
prevent such acts as child prostitution and the distribution of child pornography.

Article 15 - Protection of Children Who Have Suffered Mental or Physical Damage
1. With regard to children who have suffered mental and/or physical damage as a result of having
been a party to child prostitution or having been depicted in child pornography, the relevant
administrative agencies shall, in cooperation with one another, taking into account the mental and
physical conditions of the children as well as the environment in which they have been placed,
properly take necessary measures for their protection so that they can recover physically and
mentally from the damage they have suffered and grow with dignity. Such measures include
consultation, instruction, temporary guardianship and placement in an institution

2. The relevant administrative agencies shall, in the case of taking the measures mentioned in the
preceding paragraph, provide the protector of the child with consultation, instruction o other steps
if such steps are deemed necessary for the protection of the child mentioned in the said paragraph.

Article 16 - Improvement of Systems for the Protection of Who Have Suffered Mental or Physical Damage
In order to be able to properly provide protection based on professional knowledge with regards to
children who have suffered mental and/or physical damage as a result of having been a party to
child prostitution or having been depicted in child pornography, the State and local public entities
shall endeavor to promote researches and studies on the protection of such children, improve the
qualities of persons who undertake the protection of such children, reinforce systems of
cooperation and liaison among relevant agencies in case of the urgent need of protection of such
children, arrange systems of cooperation and liaison with private organizations which undertake the
protection of such children, and arrange other necessary systems.

 

 

 

EMAIL UPDATE:
Subject: Japan
Date: Mon, 23 Aug 1999 08:33:14 -0700 (PDT)
From: Anonymous (Sorry for listing your email originally!)

Sir:
The age of consent in Japan is indeed 13 according to the Japanese Constitution, but each prefecture makes its own "corrupting a minor"laws, under which, apparently, heavy punishment is the order of the day. I have also been told by a reliable source that if the one doing the corrupting is a foreigner, anything goes; i.e. It may just be illegal for YOU, even if you haven't officially done anything illegal. Generally 16 or 18 is the real legal limit, depending on the prefecture (province), no matter what the Constitution says. Being very careful with Japanese minors is in order.

 

Important Update:  5-19-99  -- Japan passes new law prohibiting sex with anyone under 18!  This was the first report we received.  Only thing -- it was slightly misleading ... the law only applied to paying for sex to anyone under 18!   Read the second news release.  What we need is a good bi-lingual Japanese law counselor to help us!

Japan OKs curbs on child sex, porn

Wednesday, May 19, 1999


The Associated Press

TOKYO -- Japan's lower house of Parliament on Tuesday banned the production and sale of child
pornography and outlawed sex with a minor, answering mounting criticism over the country's lax
sex-crime laws.

The measure has been approved by the upper house, so the vote made it law. The Justice Ministry
said the new restrictions will take effect in the fall.

The vote follows growing international criticism that Japanese inaction on sex tourism and Internet child pornography was allowing the crimes to persist at home and abroad.

The new law bans the sale, distribution, production, possession, and trading of child pornography and imposes punishments of up to three years in prison or fines of up to $24,400 for violators.

The legislation also makes it illegal to have sex with a minor 17 or younger. Violators will face a prison term of up to three years and fines of up to $8,100.

Until now, the law only banned sex for money with those 13 or younger, and offenders could be
charged with rape only if the victim filed a criminal complaint.

source:  http://www.bergen.com:80/morenews/japanporn19990519c.htm  - 5/19/99


Child Porn, Prostitution Are Outlawed in Japan After 2-Year Struggle

Stephanie Strom, New York Times
Wednesday, May 19, 1999

The Japanese parliament enacted a law yesterday intended to ban child prostitution and child
pornography.   Its passage was a victory for international law enforcement officials, who have long been critical of Japan's lax laws against sex with children and child pornography, and for a band of female legislators who have fought for two years to overcome strong opposition to the law on the ground that it would inhibit free speech.

``I am very happy,'' said Mayumi Moriyama, a veteran lawmaker who coaxed Japan's fractious
opposition parties into signing on to the bill. ``After two years of work, really hard work, we've done it, and I'm very pleased.''

The law, which is to go into effect later this year, punishes those found guilty of paying for sex with
children 17 and younger, and bans the sale, distribution, production, possession, import and
export of child pornography.  Current laws are vague and require a victim to file a complaint before police can take action. Producers of child pornography have found it easy to evade existing laws by avoiding pictures that show intercourse and blacking out eyes and portions of some body parts.

Magazines with titles like ``Lolita'' and ``After School Play Mates'' -- featuring pictures of girls
who appear to range in age from 5 or 6 to women in their late teens and early 20s in various states of dress and undress -- are fairly easy to buy in bookstores near red-light districts. 

Japanese companies have arranged tours to Asian countries whose overriding aim is to introduce men to children with whom they can have sex, although more stringent laws against child prostitution in countries like Thailand and the Philippines have made such trips increasingly rare.

But it was the explosive growth of the Internet, with its ability to facilitate wide distribution of images,
that put Japan on the map as the leading source of child pornography. Interpol, the international police agency, has estimated that between 70 percent and 80 percent of the child pornography available on the Internet came from Japanese sources.

Foreign parents in Tokyo were complaining that their children were stumbling across child
pornography when searching for Web sites related to ``Japanese teens'' or ``Japanese dolls,'' according to the Rev. Jacques La Pointe, a Franciscan priest who campaigned vigorously to raise awareness of the issue among Japanese policymakers.

``It's disgusting what you can find on the Internet without even trying,'' said La Pointe, who was
recently transferred to a diocese in New York but only after insisting on a meeting to discuss the issue with Prime Minister Keizo Obuchi.

Additional Release:

Junko Miyamoto of the Japanese branch of the international watchdog group End Prostitution in Asian Tourism has worked on the campaign to strengthen Japanese laws against the sexual
exploitation of children for the past decade.

She welcomed the passage of the law but cautioned that while it will make child prostitution and pornography more difficult in Japan, it is full of loopholes that were the inevitable result of the
battle to get the bill through the parliament.

``We have just cleared the first step, and it was a great first step,''  Miyamoto said. ``But now we must make sure it is enforced strictly to protect children from commercial sexual abuse.''

SOURCE:  http://www7.mercurycenter.com:80/premium/world/docs/japan19.htm

Additional Release:

She declined to identify the law's weaknesses, saying to do so would be to help those seeking to exploit children. ''All I can say is that it's not enough to stop abuse on the Internet, that's for sure,'' she said.

Mrs. Moriyama said the law would be reviewed in three years with an eye toward strengthening it. ''We will not stop our efforts to work on it,'' she said.

Yeah, but I found it:

TOKYO, May 18 (Reuters) - Japan on Tuesday passed a bill into law banning child prostitution and
pornography. 

The law prohibits people from having sexual relations with those under 18 in exchange for money, and bans the sale and distribution of child pornography.

It also applies to citizens for violations outside of Japan. Japanese tour operators have been criticised for organising overseas sex tours for Japanese businessmen.

The law punishes those who pay for sex with children with a fine of up to one million yen ($8,200) or a prison sentence of up to three years.

Those involved in trafficking children for prostitution purposes face a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison.

The law also eliminates a rule requiring victims under 13 to file complaints with authorities before
rape charges can be filed against perpetrators.

It does not set new limits on sexual drawings, collages, cartoons or stories that involve children because of concern such restrictions would infringe on freedom of speech.

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Despite heightened media attention and public expressions of disapproval, the Government and
society in general appear to take a lenient attitude toward teenage prostitution and dating for money,
which may or may not involve sexual activities.

Sex with those under 13 years of age is prohibited, but consensual sex with a 13-year-old is not prosecutable under the Criminal Code. According to current laws, in order to prove rape and forcible sexual contact with a minor age 13 or over, the prosecution must prove that the attacker threatened or used violence against the victim.

Currently, laws regarding prostitution with minors over 13 years of age are covered only by prefectural government ordinances.

Under the present Prostitution Prevention Law, selling the sexual services of children is illegal, but purchasing those services is not.

There is no law that directly prohibits the production and sale of child pornography. In 1996, 5,378 teenage girls were taken into police custody for sexual misconduct, of whom 562 were engaging in prostitution. According to a police survey of those girls, 46.8 percent said that they wanted spending money, while 29.6 percent said that they acted out of curiosity.

 

 

 

Source:

U.S. Department of State
Japan Report on Human Rights Practices for 1997
Released by the Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor, January 30, 1998.
http://www.state.gov/www/global/human_rights/1997_hrp_report/japan.html

 

 



The Significance of the Child Sex Law (Jidô baishun poruno kinshi hô no igi to
kadai). Masumi Sakô journalist. Sekai, June 1998.

As the tenth anniversary of the 1989 adoption of the United Nations Convention on the
Rights of the Child approaches, the National Diet is drafting a law to deal with child
prostitution and pornography. In response to pressure from nongovernmental
organizations including STOP Japan, a society working to eradicate child prostitution,
Diet members are working out a law that will provide for arresting adult offenders and
meting out punishments. Western countries have been tackling the problem over a period
of many years, dealing first with the maltreatment of children in general, then sexual
abuse, and finally with commercial sexual exploitation. The proposed Japanese law, in
trying to grapple with all these issues at once, leaves something to be desired but is still
commendable for its goal of protecting children's rights and its placement of responsibility
with the adults who provide the demand for these abusive practices. The drive to
establish the law began with efforts to eliminate Japanese sex tours to the Philippines,
Thailand, and other Asian countries where children are being exploited for this trade. On
the domestic front, the National Police Agency indicates that it will align its actions with
the new law in handling enjo kôsai--the "compensated dating" that has become a social
problem. And a major travel industry association is planning to hold a meeting next year
in Nagoya on the complete eradication of overseas child-sex tours.

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Services for Juveniles

One in every nine people (about 2.41 million) in Taiwan is aged from 12 to 17. Most ROC citizens
graduate from the nation's nine-year compulsory education system by age 15. These young people
face abrupt and difficult choices. Will they take the competitive examinations to enter a senior high
school or senior vocational school, enroll in a cram school to prepare for the exams (see Chapter
17, Education), or look for employment? Young people who are unable to pass the competitive
examinations or who purposely forsake educational opportunities realize that life without a high
school diploma will be difficult. Not surprisingly, rates of petty crime, drug dependence, and suicide
are rising among this group.

Traffic accidents were the leading cause of juvenile deaths during the past few years. A survey
conducted by the ROC Public Health Society from 1988 to 1993 found that 80 percent of the
motorcycle riders between the ages of 12 and 18 drove without licenses. Illegal motorcycle racing
late at night on public roads is also a growing juvenile problem.

National Police Administration (NPA) statistics indicate that the incidence of juvenile delinquency
has tripled over the past 15 years. Juvenile delinquency is becoming a high-priority social problem.
The "Investigative Report on the State of Juveniles" commissioned by the Ministry of the Interior
revealed that 12 percent of youths have experienced some form of deviant behavior, ranging from
taking drugs, attempting suicide, committing petty crimes, or visiting places off-limits to youngsters.
This phenomenon may be attributable to the rising number of latchkey kids who choose not to go
directly home after school.

Juvenile delinquency is a growing problem. While children under 18 are constituting a shrinking
percentage of the criminal population (down from 24 percent in 1984 to 19 percent in the first three
months of 1995), they are accounting for a growing percentage of violent crimes. During 1994,
more than 31 percent of all violent crimes were attributed to the 12- to 18-year-olds, 6 percentage
points higher than the previous year.

Juvenile Delinquency in Taiwan

The mean age of delinquents is falling. In the past, most juvenile delinquents were either 17 or 18
years of age, but since 1986 the number of 14- and 15-year-old delinquents has been rising quickly.
And the number of female delinquents below 17 years old increased 5.5 times during the last
decade. During the same period, almost 20 percent of all juvenile delinquents were elementary
school students, 47 percent were at the junior high level, and 25 percent were high school students.

In 1994, the breakdown of juvenile convictions was as follows: burglary, 58 percent; drug
violations, 17 percent; forcible and gang rape, 8 percent; robbery, 4 percent; illegal possession of
weapons, 2 percent; extortion, 2 percent; and homicide, 2 percent. Within the juvenile crime
category, violent crime grew by 40 percent from 1993 to 1994. The rate of amphetamine and other
drug abuse has reached major proportions over the past several years. The use of amphetamines
(usually in the form of crystal methamphetamine) by youngsters in Taiwan appears to be even more
common than in neighboring countries and areas such as Japan, Korea, Singapore, and Hong Kong.

The NPA reports that in 1994, police charged 16,145 people with drug violations. Among them,
12,547 were charged with drug abuse, 3,390 were charged with drug dealing, and the remaining
208 were charged with possession and/or transportation of illegal substances. Young people
(between the ages of 12 and 24) represented 21 percent of those charged. Furthermore, in the first
four months of 1995, 12,981 people were charged with drug-related offenses, of whom 4,479 (35
percent) were young people.

Campaign Against Drug Abuse

To combat the increase in drug usage and drug-related crimes, Premier Lien Chan formally declared
war on drugs on May 12, 1993. As almost all drugs used on the island come from overseas, the
government has mobilized every available force, including the military, to protect the island from the
influx of illegal drugs. Health, police, law, finance, education, agriculture, and customs agencies
work together to smash the supply, transportation, and distribution networks for illegal drugs. The
government is also running advertisements to convince youngsters to stay away from drugs. These
ads feature famous celebrities such as movie stars, and appear in print and on television and radio.
Large concerts featuring celebrities popular among teenagers have been organized in major cities to
drive home the anti-drug message. Taiwan's three TV stations have also aired prime-time specials
centering on this theme.

Drug Seizure and Persons Arrested for Drug Abuse Violation

The Ministry of the Interior has estimated that drug-related crimes fell 20 percent from 1992 to
1994. The number of people charged with drug trafficking or drug use fell 10 percent during the
same period.

Youth Counseling and Guidance

Young people in need do have somewhere to turn to. Counseling and psychiatric services for youths
are readily available in psychiatric health clinics at major hospitals, and at community health centers.
The government subsidizes 52 youth welfare centers in the Taiwan area which provide youths with
counseling, psychiatric advice, emergency aid, school and employment assistance, and recreational
opportunities.

Twenty-four-hour hotlines in north, central, and south Taiwan also serve people in need. One such
hotline is named "Teacher Chang" Set up by the Chinese Youth Corps 25 years ago, the Teacher
Chang hotline recruits volunteers from all walks of life to provide professional phone counseling to
youths. According to Teacher Chang, more than half of the calls taken since 1986 have been about
cross-generational relations. Calls about relationships between the sexes are second most common,
while calls about career planning have been growing in frequency.

Teenage Prostitution

A report by the Garden of Hope Foundation for adolescent prostitutes estimates that, in December
1992, there were more than 228,500 women engaged in the sex trade, of whom nearly 61,400
were teenage prostitutes. These estimates were arrived at by questioning apprehended prostitutes
about the number of women and teenagers they knew of in their work places, and then multiplying
those figures by the number of licensed and unlicensed brothels and "special entertainment
businesses" listed by the Ministry of Economic Affairs in May 1991.

According to the Penal Code, a person who has sexual intercourse with an adolescent aged 14 or
under is guilty of rape and is subject to a mandatory sentence of at least five years' imprisonment. A
person who has consensual sex with an adolescent aged 15 or 16 is also guilty of rape and must be
sentenced to one to seven years in jail. But these provisions are based on the condition that a
complaint must be filed either by the victim or the victim's guardian, not just by the public
prosecutor. Most parents of young victims are reluctant to seek redress in a public court of law, and
usually prefer out-of-court settlements. For years, social workers have recommended amending the
Penal Code to allow public prosecutors to independently press charges against patrons and pimps
of adolescent prostitutes.

In July 1995, the Legislative Yuan passed the Child and Youth Sexual Transaction Prevention Act
This law targets teenage prostitution, supplementing the Penal Code and compensating for its
inadequacy with respect to sexual exploitation of adolescents. Pursuant to the new law, public
prosecutors can now independently press charges against pimps or patrons. The Act stipulates that
a sexual patron of a prostitute aged under 16 can be sentenced to a maximum of three years'
imprisonment and a maximum fine of US$3,846. Patrons of prostitutes aged 16 or 17 are subjected
to the same fine but no imprisonment. Pimps can be sentenced to life imprisonment and fined
US$384,000.

Local halfway houses provide rescued adolescent prostitutes with shelter, food, clothing, medical
care, and counseling. These young women are encouraged to go back to school or helped to seek a
real job. The Taipei City Government lists four halfway houses for teenage prostitutes within its
Taipei Service Network for Adolescent Prostitutes Young women can stay in the halfway houses
for six months to two years. A private non-profit organization, the Taipei Women's Rescue
Foundation operates a halfway house for teenage prostitutes as well.

Pornography and Sex Crimes in Japan
Source:  (http://www.afn.org/~sfcommed/Pornography.htm)

 

Update 06-23-01:  Comments we received:
According to a new best selling book "The Okinawa Program: How the World's longest -lived people achieve everlasting health, and how you can too", by
Bradley Wilcox, they make the claim that Okinawa, the poorest section of Japan, "has the longest lived people on the planet (81.2 years). Rates of
heart disease and breast and prostrate cancer are less than a quarter of what they are in the United States. There are six times as many persons
living over 100 years than in the U.S. and that 97 percent of their lives are spent free from disability." According to your chart at ageofconsent.com, at 13 years, Japan has one of the lowest ages of consent in the world. It would be an interesting project for someone, to see what sort of correlation there might be between the age of consent and longevity. The theory would be, that sex is as natural as eating and sleeping, that countries that deny young people the opportunity of exploring their sexuality by imposing legal sanctions, are contributing to health problem for their people.

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