Sex offenders breach orders

DOZENS of violent and sex offenders have breached protection orders during the last year.

There were 417 sex offenders, 79 violent offenders and five other dangerous offenders in the Cleveland Police area eligible for the Multi-Agency Public Protection Arrangement (MAPPA) on March 31, when the last snap-shot of the service was taken.

The MAPPA scheme monitors those who pose the greatest risk of harm and those on the list are often subject to court orders to make sure they are supervised.

During the 12 months before March 31, 44 cautions or convictions were issued after notification requirements given to offenders were breached by violent and sex offenders.

In the Durham Constabulary area, there were 593 sex, violent and other dangerous offenders, while there were 21 breaches of requirements.

Broken-down figures were not available for Hartlepool and east Durham.

Hazel Willoughby, chairman of the Teesside MAPPA Strategic Management Board and director of public Protection for Durham Tees Valley Probation Trust, said: “The level of risk to communities from dangerous offenders remains small and I hope that this report will reassure the public of our commitment to keeping communities safe.”

Assistant Chief Constable Sean White, of Cleveland Police, said: “Our priority has, and will always be, the safety of the public, and by working in partnership with other agencies under MAPPA we will continue to ensure that offenders living in this area are managed effectively.

“We have a range of tools available to us in terms of monitoring offenders, such as Sexual Offences Prevention Orders, and where we find anyone in breach of a condition, they are swiftly put back before the courts.

“In addition, we have also adopted the Child Sex Offender Disclosure scheme as business as usual.

“This provides an extra layer of protection where parents, carers and guardians can apply for information about whether individuals who have regular contact with their children are registered sex offenders.”

He added that convicted sex offenders are now subject to more checks than ever before.