UK police are mulling over launching an interesting initiative in which paedophiles can avoid a court appearence if they offer themselves and their hard drives up for counselling and erasure/destruction, respectively. According to the BBC, the scheme will target proto-paedophiles in possession of "low-grade paedophilia". Upon surrender to the authorities, the offenders are subject to psychiatric testing to ensure they are no threat to children and, assuming this is the case, cautioned and released. They are, however, placed on the sex offenders' register.
The plan's architect, Donald Findlater of child protection charity the Lucy Faithfull Foundation, believes that "the easy availability of material on the internet has caused a substantial increase in sexual offences against children", and that "exposure to child pornography increases the likelihood of people becoming riskier around children".
Maybe so, but will this proposal encourage people to seek help before they become a real danger to children? It's no gun amnesty, that's for certain: you don't just hand over your Russian assault rifle and walk out of the police station, no questions asked. Therein may lie a serious impediment to success. Findlater himself admits that paedophiles "face prosecution and demonisation by the media, if they break cover".
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News source: The Reg