Congress unites to create register for sex offenders
Congress passed a motion on Tuesday urging the government to toughen prison sentences against paedophiles and to create a national registry of sex offenders.4 June 2008
MADRID - Congress on Tuesday passed a motion urging the government to reform the Penal Code in order to toughen prison sentences against paedophiles and to create a national registry of sex offenders, including those who are appealing their conviction.
The proposal, tabled by the main opposition Popular Party and supported by the governing Socialists and regional nationalists, would make paedophiles face longer sentences and ensure that their crimes and any measures against them are known to judges and police nationwide.
The motion follows the death earlier this year of a five-year-old girl in Huelva, apparently at the hands of a convicted paedophile.
The alleged killer of Mari Luz Cortés, Santiago del Valle, had never been sent to prison despite having been convicted twice of sexually abusing juveniles.
Judicial errors, poor information exchange between different courts and the lack of a sex offenders' registry like those that exist in the United Kingdom and several other European countries helped Del Valle remain free.
Mari Luz's father, Juan José Cortés, attended the debate in Congress yesterday. His family is pushing for even tough legislation, having launched a nationwide petition in favour of life imprisonment for paedophiles.
[El Pais / Expatica]