Search

‘Sexual offences have nothing to do with sex, it is always violence’ – insight into the mind of a paedophile

17:00 01 November 2012

Victim of sexual abuse

Victim of sexual abuse

PA Archive/Press Association Images

The justice system is often criticised for giving lenient sentences to paedophiles.

But how the court deals with child abusers depends on two things: the seriousness of the offence and a paedophile’s capacity and willingness to change.

There are often borderline cases where sex offenders can either be dealt with by a prison sentence or treated in the community.

One such case emerged last week when a long-serving Hampstead teacher was convicted of sexual activity with a child.

He had been facing up to two years’ jail, but in what Judge Donne QC called an “exceptional case”, the teacher was handed a three-year community order.

Judge Donne ruled the paedophile teacher would receive the most effective treatment and would be less likely to reoffend if kept within the community.

Clinical director of the Portman Clinic in Hampstead, Stanley Ruszczynski, calls it a “reflective capacity”, or a desire to delve and uncover the root cause of their offending and reconcile their behaviour with what is acceptable.

“Clinically we want to have evidence that a person is interested in thinking about their offence and why they committed it,” said Mr Ruszczynski.

“It’s about them finding a part in themselves which is curious, concerned or worried about why they did this.”

There are no quick fixes in the treatment of paedophiles, claims Mr Ruszczynski, only a long road to recovery.

He said: “The paedophile arouses or causes fear, pain, confusion and disturbance in the victim in an unconscious attempt to rid himself of these unbearable emotional states.

“Sexual offences are always violent offences, it’s nothing to do with sex. Their capacity for thought is flawed.”

The clinic works with paedophiles individually and in groups.

The group work is sometimes more effective because it is “more difficult to pull the wool over the eyes” of fellow sex offenders and progress is measured in a “degree of regret, sadness or concern” shown.

A report by the prisons and probation inspectorates found that some sex offenders were being released from jail without proper treatment to prevent reoffending.

The Stop it Now campaign, which works to protect children from sexual abuse, supported the treatment of paedophiles in the community if it helped to reduce the rate of reoffending.

A spokeswoman said: “Treatment is better than no treatment. The priority must be to reduce the risk of reoffending and if that’s in the community then that would be a better option. Prison has never really worked as a deterrent.”

The Sentencing Council, which issues guidelines to courts across the country, is in the process of reviewing the Sexual Offences Act, introduced eight years ago.

Latest News Stories

19 minutes ago
A cycle lane in central London.

Swiss Cottage residents will benefit from a direct cycling lane to the West End according to Mayor Boris Johnson, who today pressed ahead with plans for three bike “superhighways”.

54 minutes ago
Jeffery Mann died in September last year

A grieving mother feels her son was “totally failed” by mental health services before he stabbed himself to death.

Protesters outside the iconic Black Cap pub, which closed abruptly last April

Campaigners fighting to reopen the iconic Black Cap say a new survey reveals the loss of the pub is mourned far beyond its Camden Town home because of its importance to the LGBT community.

St Pancras Coroner's Cour (Pic: Google)

A man who found his gay lover from St John’s Wood dead in the living room of his flat in Belsize Park is facing an arrest warrant after he failed to show up to an inquest into the death today.

15:17
Margaret Forster with husband Hunter Davies. Picture: Nigel Sutton

Acclaimed novelist Margaret Forster has died at Marie Curie Hospice in Hampstead, her husband Hunter Davies announced today.

15:03
Edmond Fenton

An alleged fraudster accused of “pillaging” more than £400,000 from the bank accounts of a 100-year-old cousin and selling her house claimed the pensioner asked him to empty her account to prevent social services taking her assets.

11:45
The Winchester in Archway Road, Highgate. Picture: Nigel Sutton

Hundreds have joined the fight to save a Victorian pub from being carved up into flats – as it was revealed that those behind the bid are the same as those involved in the Carlton Tavern demolition scandal.

Crouch End Hill Food & Wine following stabbing

A 24-year-old man was stabbed in an attempted shop robbery as he manned his family-owned Crouch End shop with his wife yesterday.

Most read news

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Property Newsletter Sign-up

Get the latest North London property news and features straight to your inbox with our regular newsletter

I am also happy to receive other emails...
Fields marked with a * are mandatory
Email Marketing by e-shot

Competitions

Sony Smart Ultra HD 55'' LED TV

Enjoy the ultimate entertainment experience in your living room with the Sony Smart Ultra 55’’ LED TV. Be the envy of all your friends with this huge TV- you can change your living room into your own cinema! Get the boys around to watch the football or get the girls around to watch the DVD of 50 Shades.. this is a prize that everyone would enjoy! Stand a chance to upgrade your current entertainment system by wining this fantastic prize.

Surface Pro 4

Technology is ever evolving. We are constantly being shown new technology that is innovative, revolutionary and designed to make life easier for us all. Gone are the days of dial up modems and computers so large you needed half a room to store it. We are in the age of smooth, small and sleek. Companies are all trying their best to create technology that is easy to transport and guaranteed to be user friendly.

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Hampstead & Highgate Express
e-edition today

Subscribe