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CYF checking 130 sex abusers’ files.

Posted by watchingcyfswatchnewzealand on May 11, 2007

As posted on CYFSWATCH NZ

CYF checking 130 sex abusers’ files.
Wednesday, 09.05.2007, 08:09am (GMT12)

CYF checking 130 sex abusers’ files

5:00AM Wednesday May 09, 2007
By Claire Trevett 


Child, Youth and Family is checking the files of 130 young sex abusers living supervised in the community after an 18-year-old child-sex offender in CYF’s care repeatedly escaped from his minders.

The man was convicted of four child-sex offences in 2005 and was supposed to be under 24-hour CYF supervision by three caregivers.

He was moved last week when a neighbour with a 5-year-old daughter called police after he jumped the fence into her Napier property at least 14 times, once pressing his face against the window to peer in.

Police were not told he was in the area and the minister responsible for CYF, Ruth Dyson, yesterday told Parliament this was a breach of department rules.

CYF has apologised to the woman and was last night going through the files of 130 other sex abusers to ensure police had been told of their whereabouts.

National Party spokeswoman Anne Tolley said the overall management of the case was “deplorable”.

“None of my fears have been allayed by those answers. In light of what’s happened in this case, you have to question whether the police have been notified of all those cases.”

Lee Harris-Royal of CYF said the vast majority of the 130 were spread around six established CYF residential centres which offered treatment programmes.

They included a specialist sexual abusers’ centre in Christchurch, which was operated by Barnardos for up to 12 adolescent sexual abusers.

She said very few were in separate houses, but CYF was being cautious about those in its centres.

“We are not talking barbed wire so we are checking the files to make sure the police have been informed in each instance.”

She said cases of sex abusers being placed alone under supervision in homes were “very rare” and she was not aware of any other similar placements.

Ms Dyson disputed the neighbour’s contention that she was not told, saying the supervisor had asked her to tell him if she saw the man off the property and that he had “significant behavioural challenges”.

She said in light of the warning she was surprised it had taken the mother so long to call.

Ms Tolley said it was ridiculous to blame the mother. “It’s hardly the mother’s fault. The mother was so concerned she moved out of her house.”

The 18-year-old offender is to appear in court today in relation to breaching conditions in his court order.


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