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Crime: Sex Offenders

Volume 692: debated on Thursday 24 May 2007

asked Her Majesty's Government:

Whether the Identity and Passport Service (IPS) is advised of those persons who are put on the sex offenders register; if not, whether they will arrange for the register to be put on to the IPS database; and whether they will arrange for an electronic record to be made of those on the register who enter the United Kingdom. [HL3743]

Offenders who are subject to the notification requirements of the Sexual Offences Act 2003 are required to notify certain personal details to the police on a regular basis. The Identity and Passport Service supports the police, whose responsibility the management of these offenders is, by recording the names of registered sex offenders who have failed to register their current address or other details and for whom an arrest warrant has been issued. At present the IPS has a record of the names of 95 individuals assessed by the Serious and Organised Crime Agency as being high risk offenders.

The notification requirements do not in themselves prevent offenders travelling abroad and there is no bar on such offenders holding passports, but those who choose to travel abroad for three days or longer must inform the police. The police can and do inform their counterparts in the destination country of an offender's intention to travel, where appropriate. The Sexual Offences Act 2003 allows police to seek a court order to prevent a registered sex offender who has offended against children from travelling if there is evidence that he would pose a significant risk of sexual harm by doing so.