Different criteria apply depending on adult or youth
Do you consider yourself a victim of modern slavery and/or human trafficking? If so, you might have a defence but this is a complex area of law and so legal advice is strongly recommended.
Also, the statutory defence available under the Modern Slavery Act 2015 has different criteria depending on whether you’re an adult or a youth.
For defendants 18 and over, the defence is available if it can be established that the individual did the act because (1) they were compelled to do it (2) the compulsion was attributed to slavery / exploitation AND (3) a reasonable person in the same situation, sharing the individual’s relevant characteristics, would have had no realistic alternative but to do the act
For defendants under 18, the defence is available if it can be established that (1) the individual did the act as a direct consequence of being or having been a victim of slavery / exploitation AND (2) a reasonable person in the same situation, sharing the individual’s relevant characteristics, would do the act
There’s no requirement to establish ‘compulsion’, as is the case with adults running the same defence. Also, there’s no ‘no realistic prospect’ test for youths.
If you would like to speak with one of our lawyers in confidence, please contact the Public Defender Service at any one of our four offices. We are available 24hours a day, 365 days of the year.