Police have been given greater powers to monitor convicted sexual offenders under new legislation that has come into effect this week.
The Community Protection (Offender Reporting) Amendment Act 2008 strengthens travel reporting obligations, electronic communication identification requirements and makes a number of additional offences reportable offences under the existing legislation.
Community Safety Minister John Kobelke said the Act would strengthen the provisions established in the Community Protection (Offender Reporting) Act 2004 and would place the onus on the convicted offender to prove they were not re offending.
“The new Act allows police to monitor convicted offenders more closely and places a greater burden on the individual to show that they are not re-offending,” Mr Kobelke said.
“These laws will help destroy the web of harm created by an undesirable element of the community who use technology to prey on others from afar.”
The Minister said the Act required convicted sex offenders to:
· provide details of telephone numbers, mobile phone numbers, email addresses, on-line chat names and internet service providers accessed;
· provide details of every website they access using their real name, an alias, an email address or a chat name;
· report details of any travel within the State of seven days or more away from their normal place of residence;
· provide their passport and travel documentation upon return from travelling outside of Australia; and
· notify of all travel outside of the State regardless of the duration.
A number of recently created offences, targeted at child sex offenders, were not included in the Community Protection (Offender Reporting) Act 2004.
Mr Kobelke said the amendments would include cyber predator offences, child sex offender consorting offences and child sex offender loitering offences.
“The Act also retrospectively classes people convicted for cyber predator offences prior to its commencement as a reportable offender and makes them accountable to the new conditions,” he said.
“The State Labor Government has introduced tougher laws and smarter policing to create safer communities.”
Any breaches of the new conditions could result in a maximum penalty of a $12,000 fine and two years’ imprisonment.
Minister's office - 9222 9211