LAW: Reform to curb paedophiles

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A new criminal offence to deter paedophiles from seeking or accepting work with children was proposed in a government consultation paper yesterday. Ministers seek views on the details of the offence, such as the age of the children who should be protected, the jobs and activities which should be covered, how the offence should be formulated and the effect on employers and voluntary organisations.

The paper proposes that the offence carry a maximum penalty of six months' imprisonment or a pounds 5,000 fine.

Sex Offenders: A Ban on Working with Children, from Betty Moxon, Sentencing and Offenders Unit, Home Office, Queen Anne's Gate, London SW1H 9AT.