Statutory rape is having sexual intercourse with a minor (under 16 in the USA.) even with their consent by a person substantially older. Sexual experimentation among teenage peers is not considered a criminal act.
In the USA in 1990 it was estimated that nearly one million children between the ages of 12 and 19 were raped, robbed or assaulted each year. In Peru, 90 percent of teenage mothers between 12 and 16 are victims of rape. 40% of Nepalese girl-child carpet workers suffer from regular sexual harassment, including rape; the problem is also present for child workers in the garment industries and in domestic service.
Child rape is particularly common in several African countries, exacerbated by the myths sustained by witch doctors and indigenous medicine men and women that sexual intercourse with a child is a cure for ills ranging from poverty to Aids. It was reported in 1998 that one in three girls and one in five boys in South Africa will be raped or sexually abused before the age of 18. Even children who have not been raped are often victims, because they are aware early in their lives that their gender ties them to certain expected patterns of behaviour and levels of achievement.