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October 28 2013

Criminal Records of Juvenile Offenders May Be Exposed

Secret criminal records of juvenile offenders will be publicly revealed if they reoffend as adults, under a plan being considered by the Victoria (AUS) State Government. Crime victims applauded the move, which comes after decades of policy dictating the identity of child criminals be kept secret. Under current laws, the criminal records of juvenile offenders and their identities cannot be revealed, even if they reoffend, without court permission. Supreme Court challenges to name child brutes have previously failed. The State Government is considering a proposal to change the Children Youth and Family Act and the Corrections Act to allow criminal records of juvenile offenders to be made public if they offended as adults. Under the plan, youth offenders would have to have committed serious crimes, such as murder, manslaughter or sexual offences. Petty thefts and minor offences would not be revealed as part of the plan, keeping in line the ethos of giving the kiddie crims a chance to rehabilitate. The offences committed as juveniles would only be revealed in the adult court system for serious crimes and for repeat offenders.