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      The viability and constitutionality of the South African National Register for Sex Offenders: A comparative study

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          Abstract

          Section 42 of the Criminal Law (Sexual Offences and Related Matters) Amendment Act 32 of 2007 established a National Register for Sex Offenders where the particulars of all offenders guilty of sexual transgressions against children or mentally-ill persons have to be included, regardless of whether they were found guilty before or after the coming into force of the Act. Although the purpose of the Act clearly is to protect and promote the constitutional rights of victims and society in general, it is apparent that the register may infringe on the rights of sexual offenders. The inclusion of the personal details of sex offenders in a register without their permission and sometimes without their knowledge amounts to a violation amongst other rights of the right to privacy stipulated in section 14 of the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa, 1996. In this article the constitutionality of the South African register will be examined by means of a comparative study with the United States and United Kingdom, where similar registers are already in place. This legislative assessment will also provide answers as to the viability of the South African register. It is argued that South Africa's sex offender registration system may not fulfil the function it was designed for because of misconceptions as well as serious implementation and administrative issues; and that alternative solutions may be more suitable in this regard.

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          Most cited references42

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          Do Sex Offender Registration and Notification Laws Affect Criminal Behavior?

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            Justice Perverted

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              South Africa's children: A review of equity and child rights

              (2011)
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                Author and article information

                Contributors
                Role: ND
                Journal
                pelj
                PER: Potchefstroomse Elektroniese Regsblad
                PER
                Publication of North-West University (Potchefstroom Campus)
                1727-3781
                2015
                : 18
                : 7
                : 2707-2738
                Affiliations
                [1 ] University of South Africa
                Article
                S1727-37812015000700010
                10.4314/peli.v18i7.09
                07ac3123-68f9-4235-bdf3-d283ba78a6ae

                This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

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                Product Information: website
                Categories
                Law

                General law

                Sex offender, register, notification, human rights

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