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Half of sex offenders to be released this year have undergone no treatment

The figures were revealed via a parliamentary question by independent TD Denis Naughten.

shutterstock_184151387 Source: Shutterstock/GlebStock

HALF OF THE convicted sex offenders released from Irish prisons this year underwent no treatment whatsoever while incarcerated.

The figure was revealed in the answer to a parliamentary question by independent Roscommon TD Denis Naughten to the Minister for Justice Frances Fitzgerald last week.

104 sex offenders were due for release between January and December 2016.

Of those just 50 participated in either individual or group-based treatment or were in contact with available psychology services during their incarceration. A further five indicated that they wished to be engaged with assessment and treatment during 2016.

“This figure again exposes the risk that communities face from those determined to reoffend once released from prison,” said Naughten.

The Building Better Lives treatment programme for sex offenders is currently located at Arbour Hill Prison in Dublin, although there are plans to extend the programme to the Midlands Prison Campus.

15/6/2010. Fine Gael Leadership Crisis Independent TD Denis Naughten Source: Eamonn Farrell/Rollingnews.ie

“The failure to engage with the support services or availability of treatment shows that when offenders are released from prison they need to be properly and closely monitored,” Naughten added.

Naughten has similarly described the sex offenders register in Ireland as “not fit for purpose” in it current guise.

The current law governing the conditions for registration, the Sex Offenders Act 2001, is completely outdated and needs to be urgently reformed to ensure more effective management of sex offenders.

Naughten has similarly bemoaned the perceived laxity in the monitoring of released sex offenders in Ireland.

At present, once a sex offender registers their official address with any Garda station they can roam around the country for six days as long as they turn up at that official address on the seventh day.

The law governing this aspect of the monitoring of sex offenders is the Sex Offenders Act 2001, which is due to be reformed within the next 18 months.

Read: Man who “touched” teenage boys has name removed from sex offenders’ register

Read: Judge asked not to jail Dublin man who had sex with 15-year-old

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