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Tracking of sex offenders improved
[Posted: Wed 17/05/2006 www.irishhealth.com]
The Irish and UK governments are to increase their co-operation in relation to the tracking of sex offenders who travel between the two jurisdictions.
Both governments are set to sign a 'memorandum of understanding' in the coming weeks, to formalise a bilateral agreement on this issue. This will allow authorities in Ireland and the UK to share information on sex offenders.
The move has been welcomed by the ISPCC. According to the society, there is evidence that sex offenders are moving from the UK to Ireland, with some attempting to access and even abduct children.
"This agreement will mean that the UK, PSNI and Irish police forces will now formally inform each other and share information regarding the movement of sex offenders across the jurisdictions", it said.
The ISPCC also pointed out that this move will place significant pressure on the Irish authorities to bring tracking, monitoring and information systems into line with those systems currently in place in the UK.
"In particular, such an agreement will place significant pressure on the Irish authorities to speed up the roll out of the vetting process and to introduce systems to collate and share 'soft' information", it said.
An example of soft information is when a person has not been convicted of an offence, but has been under suspicion or investigation for child abuse offences, or has even been suspended from working with children.
"In recent months, difficulties have arisen between Irish and UK authorities regarding the vetting of staff moving from Britain to work in Ireland, with UK authorities looking for information which Irish authorities cannot provide. The ISPCC is hopeful that this agreement will resolve this difficulty", the society said.
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