13:55 21 July 2012
In a bid to cut re-offending rates upon release from prison, sex offenders are to face mandatory lie detector tests.
According to the Guardian, the government is pushing for an introduction of required polygraph testing across England and Wales.
A polygraph a.k.a lie detector test charts heart rate, blood pressure and brain activity. Intelligence agencies, police and courtrooms have been known to use the technology. Some, however, have been known to "beat the test" after much practice.
If the scheme goes ahead, tests would apply to the 750 most serious sex offenders currently out on licence.
Downing Street officials claim that the method has already been tested in the East and West Midlands probation regions between April 2009 and October 2011.
The results were that offenders were more honest with their parole contacts and even gave information about what risks they would pose on the outside. They also owned up to contacting a victim or potential target and admitted that the tests help them to better rehabilitate themselves, therefore changing their behaviour.
If an offender fails their test, they can be sent back to prison under the new plan.
A No 10 source told the Guardian: "It's vital that we protect the public from serious sex offenders. That's why the conditions after they leave prison need to be both strict and rigorously enforced.
"The pilot schemes using lie detectors to manage offenders in the community have been a success. So now we're looking at how it could be rolled out to provide probation officers with more information to manage the most serious offenders."
There are on average 750 serious sex offenders at any one time living in the community on licence.
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