Saturday, October 6, 2012

Jamaica - Sex offender law strengthened

Original Article


A set of regulations to give teeth to the Sex Offenders' Registry has been tabled in the Senate.

The regulations also propose that a sex offender is required to have with him at all times, a certificate of registration of sex offender while he is away from his main residence.

It says that if a sex offender finds his way from his main residence without his certificate of registration of sex offender on his person, he is guilty of an offence and is liable upon summary conviction in a Resident Magistrate's Court to a fine of up to $1 million or 12 months in prison.

The regulation further proposes that a registry be established in each parish. It also says that subject to Section 32 (2) and 34 (PDF) of the Sexual Offences Act, where a sex offender reports his intention to travel outside Jamaica, the registrar shall notify the immigration authorities of Jamaica of the offender's intention to travel outside Jamaica before the date on which the sex offender is to travel.

The Sexual Offences Act was signed into law on October 20, 2009. With the advent of the Sexual Offences Act, a man who is found guilty of rape as well as any person who commits a grievous sexual assault or aids and abets a grievous sexual assault can face a sentence of life imprisonment. Marital rape is also covered under the act as an offence committed only by a husband against his wife.

Section 29 (PDF) of the act provides for a Sex Offenders' Register and a Sex Offenders' Registry.

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