187A Meaning of unlawfully

(1)

For the purposes of sections 183 and 186, any act specified in either of those sections is done unlawfully unless, in the case of a pregnancy of not more than 20 weeks’ gestation, the person doing the act believes—

(a)

that the continuance of the pregnancy would result in serious danger (not being danger normally attendant upon childbirth) to the life, or to the physical or mental health, of the woman or girl; or

(aa)

that there is a substantial risk that the child, if born, would be so physically or mentally abnormal as to be seriously handicapped; or

(b)

that the pregnancy is the result of sexual intercourse between—

(i)

a parent and child; or

(ii)

a brother and sister, whether of the whole blood or of the half blood; or

(iii)

a grandparent and grandchild; or

(c)

that the pregnancy is the result of sexual intercourse that constitutes an offence against section 131(1); or

(d)

that the woman or girl is severely subnormal within the meaning of section 138(2).

(2)

The following matters, while not in themselves grounds for any act specified in section 183 or section 186, may be taken into account in determining for the purposes of subsection (1)(a), whether the continuance of the pregnancy would result in serious danger to her life or to her physical or mental health:

(a)

the age of the woman or girl concerned is near the beginning or the end of the usual child-bearing years:

(b)

the fact (where such is the case) that there are reasonable grounds for believing that the pregnancy is the result of sexual violation.

(3)

For the purposes of sections 183 and 186, any act specified in either of those sections is done unlawfully unless, in the case of a pregnancy of more than 20 weeks’ gestation, the person doing the act believes that the miscarriage is necessary to save the life of the woman or girl or to prevent serious permanent injury to her physical or mental health.

(4)

Where a medical practitioner, in pursuance of a certificate issued by 2 certifying consultants under section 33 of the Contraception, Sterilisation, and Abortion Act 1977, does any act specified in section 183 or section 186 of this Act, the doing of that act shall not be unlawful for the purposes of the section applicable unless it is proved that, at the time when he or she did that act, he or she did not believe it to be lawful in terms of subsection (1) or subsection (3), as the case may require.

Section 187A: inserted, on 16 December 1977, by section 6 of the Crimes Amendment Act 1977 (1977 No 113).

Section 187A(1)(a): amended, on 10 July 1978, by section 2(1) of the Crimes Amendment Act 1978 (1978 No 6).

Section 187A(1)(aa): inserted, on 10 July 1978, by section 2(2) of the Crimes Amendment Act 1978 (1978 No 6).

Section 187A(2)(b): amended, on 1 February 1986, by section 7(2) of the Crimes Amendment Act (No 3) 1985 (1985 No 160).

Section 187A(4): amended, on 18 September 2004, by section 175(1) of the Health Practitioners Competence Assurance Act 2003 (2003 No 48).