Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Chemical Castration for Paedophiles to Get out of Jail Early

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Chemical Castration for Paedophiles to Get out of Jail Early

Article excerpt

PAEDOPHILES are to be "chemically castrated" under radical Government plans to improve child protection.

Volunteers who have committed crimes such as child sex abuse will beoffered drugs to suppress their sexual urges.

Offenders will be told they must agree to take the hormones if they want to be let out of prison early. Once free they will have to remain on the drugs or go back to jail.

A Home Office source said: "This is something we want to test to see if it can be effective in helping to protect children from sex offenders." The proposals, being unveiled in the Commons by Home Secretary John Reid, will also see offenders facing a compulsory lie detector test after theirrelease.

They form part of a package of measures intended to respond to public concern about the supervision of the thousands of sex offenders who are living in the community after serving their sentences.

In a blow to campaigners, Mr Reid will announce that he has ruled out the introduction of a British version of the US "Megan's Law" under which members of the public are told the names and addresses of paedophiles freed from prison.

The Home Secretary had decided that such a move could prove counter-productive by driving offenders underground and leading to possible vigilante action, sometimes against innocent people.

He has, however, decided to extend the release of information on paedophiles' identities to single mothers in response to concern that some are deliberately targeted by paedophiles searching for children to abuse.

Other plans announced today include:

An extension of the use of electronic tagging of paedophiles.

Increased medical treatment for offenders, including psychological help and drug treatment to curb convicts' sex drive.

Today's proposals follow an consultation by the Home Office, which began last summer, on the best way to monitor sex offenders in the community. …

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