Recent changes to the Criminal Code of Canada gives the police a further tool to fight anyone who posts intimate pictures of others without their consent.
Section 162.1 changes how cyber bullying can be dealt with. It creates a new offence to publish, distribute, transmit videos or photos of a person in an intimate setting without that person’s consent.
Child pornography laws have existed to protect children under the age of 18 from such use of nude/semi-nude pictures. However, the new section of the Criminal Code will protect everyone.
In order to be found guilty of a crime under section 162.1 the image must be one that is classified as an “intimate image”. This would include nude, partially nude or people engaged in explicit sexual activity.
The difficult thing the courts will have to grapple with is the requirement that the “Victim” had a reasonable expectation of privacy, at least in their mind. This will likely result in litigation with respect to the circumstances surrounding the taking of the pictures and what the intention of the parties were with regards to the pictures.
The new Section was created to combat the increase in distribution of intimate pictures after a nasty break-up of a relationship.