Friday, 18 December 2020
Harassment, Harmful Communications and Related Offences Bill 2017: Committee and Remaining Stages
I move amendment No. 19:
In page 6, line 22, to delete “within 2 years” and substitute “within seven years”.
Amendments Nos. 19 to 21, inclusive, relate to time limits under which summary proceedings can be taken under this Bill. I am concerned that two years since the offence was committed is too short, especially given the nature of these offences and the psychological distress and resulting delays in reporting that can occur. I am proposing three alternatives, that the time limit would be extended to seven years, that the clock would start from when the victim became aware of the crime or that it would start when the victim could have reasonably been expected to become aware of the crime.