Swedish sex offenders to get internet access

Swedish sex offenders to get internet access
Convicted paedophiles and sex offenders at a secure clinic in Växsjö in southern Sweden will regain internet access after a ban instigated in 2008 has been deemed illegitimate.

A collective ban against computer and mobile phone use, which was instigated in 2008, has been deemed illegitimate by the National Board of Health and Welfare (Socialstyrelsen).

According to Anita Åkesson, head of the Forensic Psychiatry Centre (Rättspsykiatriska regionkliniken) in Växsjö it was impossible for them to maintain the ban pending another report to be filed against them.

“Now we will just have to see how this goes,“ she told news agency TT.

In 2008 the centre banned inmates from having mobile phones, laptops and other personal electronic equipment. The reason behind the ban was to stop inmates from committing further crimes while at the centre, which has happened in the past.

But according to the National Board of Health and Welfare (Socialstyrelsen) collective bans of this kind are not permitted under existing legislation.

The board has now solved the issues by giving each of the wards a computer with an internet connection placed in communal areas.

“We are not taking this all the way. Our patients will still not have access to private computers,” Åkesson told the Dagen Nyheter (DN) daily.

Among the inmates there are two men convicted of child pornography crimes. One has a history of downloading child pornography while being treated at the centre.

Per Anders Sunesson at the National Board of health and Welfare confirmed to DN that bans must be decided on an individual basis.

“But if someone has been convicted for possessing child pornography it is my opinion that such a person should not have access to the internet,“ he told DN.

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