The number of known child sex offenders in NSW has increased more than 500% in the 5 years since 3 year old William Tyrrell went missing.  The sheer volume of known sex offenders has made it virtually impossible for police to keep tabs on them all.  The NSW Police Force says there are “serious problems” with the child sex offenders register, which was designed to monitor the worst pedophiles as they move around the state.  The list is often incomplete, with some offenders never added, while others drop off inexplicably.  A new computer program, introduced to fix the problems, is already failing.  The problem is worst on the mid-north coast, where hundreds of sex offenders are known to live.

Media organisations are prevented by suppression order from revealing the exact number of pedophiles living in and around the village of Kendall when William went missing.  The number has been said, in court, to be “shocking”.  The police force established the Child Protection Register in 2001, which aims to identify the presence in a given community of serious sex offenders, including men who have killed or raped children.  However, from 2014 it has been bedevilled by “systematic issues”.  Part of the problem is the sheer weight of numbers: in October 2003, there were 916 people on the register; by last year, there were 4344.  Yet there has been no proportionate increase in resources.

System flaws resulted in child sex offenders “being in the community without being monitored by NSW Police”, according to a recent report by the Law Enforcement Conduct Commission.  There has been one case in which a person reoffended while unmonitored.  The first police on the scene of William’s disappearance thought the boy may have been snatched.  New documents show they searched the child protection register for local names on day one of his disappearance.  Home Affairs Minister Peter Dutton has proposed a national, public register to include the name, date of birth and photograph of known pedophiles, as operates in the US. Opponents say it will lead to an increase in vigilante justice.

Source: Compiled by APN from media reports

Print This Post Print This Post