is any sexual intercourse with a child under the age of 18 years old, whether or not the child consents.


is a crime under the Sexual Offences Act, 2006.


is a breach of children’s human rights under the Constitution of Kenya, 2010.

defilement can cause:

physical injuries inside and outside of the body (including cuts, tears, severe bleeding and damage to internal reproductive organs, which sometimes requires surgery)

psychological damage to victims (including depression, fear, anxiety, distrust and sometimes suicidal thoughts)

unwanted pregnancies

HIV/AIDS and other sexually transmitted diseases

Interuption of schooling (as victims are often forced to drop out of school)

social stigma

the penalties for defilement include:

Defilement of a child 11 years and below carries a sentence of life imprisonment;

Defilement of a child between the ages of 12 to 15 carries a sentence of 20 years imprisonment;

Defilement of a child between 16- 18 years old carries a sentence of 15 years imprisonment.

160 girls project - justice for defiled girls in Kenya

police have been ordered by the high court of kenya in the “160 girls” case to enforce defilement laws, and to investigate, apprehend, and arrest all perpetrators of defilement.