NATION

Corrections Lauds Registration Of Sex Offenders Bill

The Fiji Corrections Service (FCS) has acknowledged the formulation of the Registration of Sex Offenders Bill. The Corrections Service said it provided room for more co-ordination between responsible Ministries. According
30 Mar 2018 10:00
Corrections Lauds Registration Of Sex Offenders Bill
Members of the Standing Committee on Justice, Law and Human Rights SODELPA Opposition MP Mikaele Leawere (left) and deputy chairperson Mataiasi Akauola during the oral submissions on the Online Safety Bill and Registration of Sex Offenders Bill on March 28, 2018. Photo: Parliament of Fiji

The Fiji Corrections Service (FCS) has acknowledged the formulation of the Registration of Sex Offenders Bill.

The Corrections Service said it provided room for more co-ordination between responsible Ministries.

According to their written submission to the Standing Committee on Justice, Law and Human Rights, they wished to provide a holistic approach towards the successful implementation of the Bill and the management of sex offenders who were serving their sentence in correctional facilities Fiji-wide including those serving in the community.

They submitted on Wednesday that once an offender was convicted by the Court, the Corrections had the obligation to calculate the offenders’ earliest possible date and their latest possible date of discharge.

“To ensure that the sex offender does not return to similar crime, a community mentor must be nominated to monitor the offender and periodically provide reports on his or her progress to the Officer in Command of the nearest Correction Centre,” they said.

“Monitoring of Sex Offenders fully released from the Fiji Corrections Service should take two years from their date of release.

“The period goes in line with the calculation of recidivism (tendency to reoffend) rate, in that they should not commit another offence within the two year period.”

The Corrections also recommended that the Bill included provisions for the submission of a pre-sentencing sex offender report.

“It is important that a responsible ministry such as Social Welfare, Women and Poverty Alleviation provides a pre-sentencing report to the court to assist the court to determine the sentence to be disposed.

“The pre-sentencing report must include the background of the offender and the nature of the offence committed.”

On the issue of the treatment of sex offenders, the Fiji Corrections Service submitted that under the Corrections Act 2006, they provided intervention programmes for inmates entering the prison system.

“The sustainability of the programmes provided in prison is crucial to ensure that the money spent on these groups of offenders is cost effective.”

They submitted that the community also had a part to play to prevent offenders from committing similar offences in the future.

Edited by Naisa Koroi

Feedback:  fonua.talei@fijisun.com.fj



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