May 30, 2017 Practice Points

SCOTUS Rules Statutory Rape Requires Victim's Age to Be Less Than 16

The Court issues its decision in Esquivel-Quintana v. Sessions.

By Sanford Hausler

The U.S. Supreme Court in Esquivel-Quintana v. Sessions decided that a conviction under a state statute criminalizing consensual sexual intercourse between a 21-year-old and a 17-year-old does not qualify as sexual abuse of a minor under the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA). That being the case, such a crime is not an aggravated felony that would warrant deportation under the INA. The Court held, based on a view of state laws, that where sexual intercourse is abusive solely because of the ages of the participants, the victim must be younger than 16.

Sanford Hausler is of counsel with Cox Padmore Skolnik & Shakarchy LLP in New York, New York.

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