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Sexual Offences

Question for Ministry of Justice

UIN HL3239, tabled on 3 November 2015

To ask Her Majesty’s Government on what basis the accumulation of evidence obtained during the polygraph test of a given sex offender meets the threshold test of the repeat of criminal actions warranting the furtherance of a custodial sentence.

Answered on

17 November 2015

The purpose of the polygraph is to check the compliance of high risk sexual offenders with their licence conditions and to monitor the risk they present to the public. It is also used to improve the way in which the offender is managed during release on licence.

An offender may be recalled if they fail to comply with the polygraph examination, attempt to ‘trick’ the test or if they disclose that they have failed to comply with their licence conditions.

The legislation for imposing the polygraph test on sexual offenders is enshrined in the Offender Management Act 2007. Section 30 of the Act specifically prohibits evidence of any matter mentioned in the polygraph being used in any proceedings against a released person for an offence in a criminal court.