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What is the Sex Offender Register?

Officer filling in sex offender details

If you ever find yourself interviewed by the police in the United Kingdom regarding sexual offences, one thing that might come up is the sex offender register. But what exactly is it? How do you get placed on it? What sort of offences can lead to placement on the register? And what are the requirements and consequences of being on it? In this blog post, we'll explore all these questions and more to help you better understand the sex offenders register in the UK.

In the UK, the sex offender register is a register maintained by the police that contains the names and details of people convicted, cautioned, or released from prison for sexual offenses. This register was introduced in 1997 and since then, has been an important tool in protecting vulnerable members of society.

The criteria for being placed on the sex offenders register differ depending on the age of the offender and their sentence. If someone has been convicted of a sexual offense, they will be placed on the register for a certain period of time. This can range from a minimum of 2 years to a maximum of a lifetime, depending on the offence committed.

There are three levels of registration: standard, intermediate, and notification. Standard registration lasts for the period of the sentence given, up to a maximum of 10 years for those over 18 and up to 5 years for those under 18. Intermediate registration is for those who have committed a more serious offense or re-offended, and the duration is up to a maximum of 8 years for those over 18. Notification registration is for those whose offenses involve children and is a lifetime registration.

What are the requirements?

Once placed on the register, there are certain requirements that the offender must adhere to - including notifying authorities of their address, any job changes or travel plans, and allowing the police to come to their address at any time to check on them. Failure to comply with these requirements can lead to serious consequences – including imprisonment.

On registering with the police, an offender must provide specific information including:

Their name (and any alias they may use)

Their address and any other address where they stay

Whether living with a child; or if staying in a household where a child lives for at least 12 hours a day

Details of their conviction

Details of bank accounts to which they have access

Their date of birth

Their national insurance number

Details of any passports they may hold

Sexual offenses that can lead to placement on the register include rape, sexual assault, indecent exposure, and possession of indecent images of children

Can the public see the register? Get details of Offenders from it?

The register isn’t public, but the police can and do share information with partner agencies when it’s necessary to safeguard children or other members of the public.

How often must you re-register?

At least annually or within 3 days of any of the above details changing.

What happens if you don't register or re-register in time

You may commit the offence of breach of your notification requirements.

This is an offence that can be tried in either the Magistrates Court or Crown Court. The maximum penalty is 5 Years imprisonment. You may be arrested.

Can you help me?

If you are facing a police interview with regard to sexual offences or breach of sex offenders notification requirements in the Kent area and need representation at the police station when you are interviewed, free of charge please contact Robert Cashman of police station agent on 01732 247427.


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