7 June, 2012 - 15:52
Do half of convicted paedophiles [sic] avoid jail?
"The Sun has claimed that half of all people who are found guilty of paedophilic offences [sic] are not jailed. Is this correct?
“HALF of all guilty paedos [sic] are let off, many despite crimes spanning decades... In total, of 1,174 paedophiles [sic] found guilty last year, only 643 were jailed, Ministry of Justice stats show.”
Defining paedophilia [not quite]
An immediate problem with checking the claim is that paedophilia is not in itself a criminal offence; a range of offences covers behaviours which could be considered to be paedophilic [sic].
However there is evidence of what the Sun could be referring to when it talks of paedophilic offences [sic]. Under section 9 of the Sexual Offences Act 2003 (SOA), anyone over the age of 18 commits an offence by sexually touching anyone under the age of 16.
The Sun's basic point is that around half of people who are convicted of paedophilic offences [sic] are not jailed. The working adopted here found that 695 out of 1,199 people convicted of paedophilic offences [sic] were sentenced to immediate custody. This leaves only around 42 per cent who were not jailed.
The Sun's calculations suggest a narrower definition of padeophilia [sic] might be at work here - excluding 'Abuse of trust' and 'Gross Indeceny with Children'. However this leaves us with almost exactly the same proportion - just over two in five - cases of sexual offences not resulting in custody.
So the Sun needs to better define what it means by 'perverts' and 'paedophiles' [NS Sherlock] in order for its readers to check the statistics it is putting forward. For now, Full Fact and the Ministry of Justice are at a loss as how the Sun arrived at its figures."
Brave, thorough and noble work, from Mr Webb, but, he went and spoiled it, here (we will let him know) ...
"Looking at the breakdown of offences provided, it seems fair to take sexual activity with a child under 16, sexual activity with a child under 13, child prostitution and pornography, abuse of trust, and gross indecency with children as offences which can reasonably be considered as paedophilic [sic].
Paedophilia requires that the 'object' be pre-pubescent, by definition.
Very few sexual offences are carried out by Paedophiles.