Magazine article The Spectator

Banned Wagon

Magazine article The Spectator

Banned Wagon

Article excerpt

PAEDOPHILES and other sex offenders do not enjoy a lot of public sympathy. Yet is that any reason for the attack on their rights contained in the Criminal Justice and Court Services Act, which came into force last week?

Under the provisions, which amend the Sex Offenders Act 1997, sex offenders are obliged to furnish police with any change of address within three days; failure to do so can result in a prison sentence of up to five years. The sex offender is also obliged to notify police of an intention to travel abroad, how and when and where he intends to leave the country, his point of entry into a foreign country and the address of his accommodation for his first night out of the country.

What really raises eyebrows is that these requirements apply not just to those convicted of sex offences, but to those merely cautioned over them. Such people have neither had their guilt proved in court, nor have they been invited to prove their innocence. …

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