New measures to deal with sex offenders announced

Home secretary David Blunkett has unveiled a list of proposals
aimed at dealing with sex offenders, in preparation for a bill
later this year, writes Katie Leason.

Those on the sex offenders register will have to re-register
their details with the police each year instead of every five
years, while failure to do so could result in a five-year jail

A change to the child prostitution laws will create a new
offence of commercial sexual exploitation of a child, and adults
who pay for sex from a child aged under 18 will face prosecution
and up to life imprisonment.

Sex with a child under 13 will carry a life sentence, 14 years
for sex with a child aged between 13 and 15, and seven years if the
child is 16 or 17. It will no longer be a defence to claim that the
child said they were older.

The law will also apply to those who sell children for sex and
those involved in making pornography.

In addition, a new criminal offence of “grooming” is to be
introduced to enable police to arrest adults who befriend children
with the aim of abusing them.

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