Perverts face new bans

PEDOPHILES can now be banned from using the internet under tough world-first laws introduced in South Australia.

Police will also have the power to seize a pedophile’s computer at any time without a court order and examine its contents.

The Pedophile Internet Ban legislation – which became law last week – allows judges to issue restraining orders preventing pedophiles from using a computer to target children through chatrooms and message boards.

Police have appointed two full-time detectives to the Child Exploitation Investigation Section to tackle the growing number of cyberspace stalkers.

The legislation is the second Bill drafted by the SA Family First party targeting child sex offenders.

The first removed the statute of limitations that prevented pedophiles who committed sex crimes against children before 1983 from being charged.

“This new law was designed to further target pedophiles and crack down on their ability to do our children harm,” Family First MLC Dennis Hood said.

“As far as I’m concerned pedophiles are the lowest of the low and every possible means should be used to put them behind bars.”

Mr Hood said the legislation was unique in the world.

SA judges had never before issued a court order to restrict a pedophile’s access to a computer because legal argument could be mounted they did not have the power.

“This new law specifically gives judges that right to keep pedophiles off the internet,” Mr Hood said.

“The new law also gives police specific powers to enter a pedophile’s residence and seize their computer without waiting for a court order.

“This is important because warrants can sometimes take days or even weeks to be issued in which time damage can be done.”

Mr Hood said the internet was increasingly used as a tool by pedophiles to target youngsters.

“A recent American Medical Association Journal estimated that 89 per cent of sexual solicitations directed at minors now occur online,” he said.

Det-Insp Mark Trenwith urged parents to restrict computers to common rooms in the house so they could be aware of what their children were doing while online.

“If there is one thing parents should do to protect their children is not allowing them to have a computer in their bedroom,” he said.

“I can’t recall a case we have investigated where the computer hasn’t been in a bedroom.”

Mr Hood said he was delighted the Family First legislation received the votes of the State Labor Government and Liberal Opposition to become law.

Published in: on October 28, 2007 at 3:03 pm  Leave a Comment  

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