Many students think the female tutor who was arrested for alleged sex with her underage student should not take all the blame.
Last Thursday, a 21-year-old tutor allegedly took a 15-year-old boy to her home where they had sex. Afterwards, the boy felt pain, so on Sunday she brought him to a clinic near her home in Sha Tin.
The boy complained about pain in his private parts and the doctor became suspicious after examining him. He thought that it was unusual for a young boy to sustain such an injury and alerted the police. The tutor was arrested at the clinic and police took the boy to hospital for further examination.
The most common charge placed against people suspected of having sex with minors is "intercourse with a girl under 16", which carries a maximum penalty of five years in prison.
Barrister Albert Luk Wai-hung thinks it is unlikely the female tutor will face such a charge, because women are not liable for such an offence. Instead, she might be charged with "indecent conduct towards a child under 16". However, this has a heavier maximum penalty - 10 years' imprisonment.
While legal experts believe that the tutor may face stiff penalties, there are many students who think it is unfair to put all the blame on her.
"This is not all the tutor's fault. I don't believe the tutor can have sex with the boy if he doesn't want to. It is not like he is being forced to do it," says Jason (not his real name), a 19-year-old sociology student from Hong Kong Shue Yan University.
Another student, Natasha Lau, 17, from South Island School, says she doesn't think the woman should be charged. "I believe a 15-year-old student is able to make his own decision. This could not be only the female teacher's mistake; both of them have made mistakes," she says.
The tutor had just graduated from the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology and had been tutoring the boy for more than three years.
The police are investigating the case.
This article appeared in the Young Post print edition as "Tutor faces 10 years"