Australia considers chemical castration for pedophiles

Sydney, Aug 26 (IANS) Australian government is contemplating chemical castration, or sexual suppression medication, for punishing convicted pedophiles.

A task force has been convened in New South Wales (NSW) to review the use of anti-libidinal treatments in the NSW correctional system and whether they can be expanded to give courts the choice of using it as a sentencing option, reported Xinhua news agency.

NSW Justice Minister Troy Grant on Wednesday said all options needed to be considered to protect children from abuse.

“One of the worrying statistics that came out of our investigation is that up to 17 percent of child sex offenders are likely to re-offend in two years,” Grant said.

“Anti-libidinal medication alone is not a cure, but I want to make sure we make the best possible use of it, combined with other strong measures, to prevent re-offending.”

“If we make can make improvements that save just one child from this horrendous crime, it will be worth it.”

Chemical castration is currently used in Australia on a voluntary basis, however it is believed this is the first proposal for the use of anti-libidinal drugs in sentencing an offender.

NSW, Queensland and Victorian state courts can currently order child sex offender, nearing the end of their prison sentence, to be assessed for the use of the drug if they are still considered to be a high risk of re-offending.

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