Caution on sex register, says crime reformer

ANDREA VANCE
Last updated 05:00 05/08/2014

Relevant offers

Crime

Armed Offenders Squad at Bay of Plenty address Air rifle sparks police call out in Hamilton Manawatu man found not guilty of raping, assaulting children Waikato police operation nets 218 burglars in three months Gunman still at large in Northland, police continue hunt Formal warnings for digging duck pond on protected wetland Mongrel Mob kidnap victim chewed his way to freedom Parliament considers call to pardon men convicted before homosexual law reformed Auckland man builds snow cave to escape the big smoke Police arrest machete wielder near Rotorua primary school

A justice reform lobby group says civil servants caught leaking details from a new child sex offender register should be jailed.

Rethinking Crime and Punishment says the database should be evaluated over three years to ensure it is effective in protecting children from sex crimes. And if it doesn't work, then it should be abandoned.

Cabinet ministers have signed off plans to introduced the index, which will initially be limited to child sex abusers. Police and Corrections Minister Anne Tolley said it would not be open to the public.

Rethinking Crime and Punishment spokesman Kim Workman said new legislation could include a clause that public servants who deliberately leaked details from the register would be sacked and face a jail sentence.

Tolley was "wise to act with caution", he said. He pointed to a British database which "changed from being a public protection measure to becoming punishment in its own right". Its function effectively shifted from the protection of children to a means of further punishing offenders after their release from prison.

Workman also warned of a "false sense of public security".

"The harsh reality is that their child is at greater risk from people they or their family know, rather than some stranger who is on the register."

Ad Feedback

- Stuff

Special offers

Featured Promotions

Sponsored Content