New law makes buying sex a criminal offence

New law makes buying sex a criminal offence

New laws have been unveiled which will make it a criminal offence to purchase sex.

The new Sexual Offences Bill also includes new offences for arranging or producing child porn, bans convicted sex offenders for life from working with children or vulnerable people and provides new powers for monitoring convicted sex offenders after their release.

The Bill leaves the age of consent unchanged at 17.

Justice Minister Frances Fitzgerald says particular attention has been paid to protect children from online grooming by paedophiles.

She said: "Children are being exploited in one part of the world, it's being shown online in another part of the world, people are accessing that, paedophile networks are accessing it and we want to make sure of our law.

"This is a very difficult area to police, our police need to be trained in cybercrime and in the use of the internet.

"There is new encryption being done, so this Bill will be an aid towards tackling that dreadful crime."


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