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Press releases archive

 

ECPAT UK calls for cross-government strategy to deal with British sex offenders who abuse children overseas

The sentencing this week of Barry McCloud for child abuse offences is a welcome breakthrough towards achieving greater justice for children exploited by British sex offenders who travel overseas. Earlier this year McCloud pleaded guilty to a series of disturbing child abuse offences involving a young girl in India. McCloud befriended the family in Goa gaining their trust in order to access their daughter who was aged between nine and ten when she was raped and sexually abused. McCloud has been sentenced to life imprisonment with a recommendation that he serve a minimum of seven years.

Christine Beddoe, ECPAT UK Director, commented “This is an important result and ECPAT UK congratulates Hertfordshire police on their hard work and determination to achieve a conviction in this case. The extensive international co-operation provides an excellent example which should inform similar investigations across the UK."

Detective Inspector Paul Doran, the Senior Investigating Officer who led the inquiry said: “This was a protracted investigation with many issues to overcome. The case involved not only extensive work on the part of Hertfordshire Constabulary but also relied on the professionalism and dedication of experts within CEOP, SOCA and Justice and Care which undoubtedly led to a successful outcome and removed the risk McCloud posed.”

Christine Beddoe added “Unfortunately the UK has an appalling record in prosecuting British citizens for child sexual abuse overseas and successful cases like this are extremely rare. ECPAT UK is calling on the government to introduce a cross-government strategy to deal effectively with sex offenders who abuse children overseas to better protect children in the UK and abroad. This strategy should bring together the work of all the different government agencies involved with these cases, to prevent offences from taking place and to prosecute those individuals who abuse and exploit children.”

ECPAT UK has been calling on the government to take action to prevent sex offenders abusing children overseas for a number of years. Christine Beddoe commented “As an immediate response we want to see the government close the 3-day loophole which currently allows known sex offenders to travel abroad for up to 3 days without notifying the authorities of their intent to go overseas. The UK government has a duty to protect children everywhere from British travelling sex offenders.”

10th December 2010

ENDS

PRESS CONTACT
Christine Beddoe, Director, ECPAT UK
Tel: 07906 341 889 or 020 7233 9887

Notes to editors:

For more details on ECPAT UK's work on travelling sex offenders, please read this briefing.

McCloud was charged under Section 72 of the Sexual Offences Act 2003.
Police Officers from Hertfordshire Constabulary travelled to India to work with the local authorities and non-government agencies.
CEOP is the Child Exploitation and Online Protection Centre, SOCA is the Serious Organised Crime Agency and Justice and Care is the Indian based NGO who work to support families vulnerable to abuse.

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