18 June 2020

Member for Northern Victoria, Tania Maxwell MP has called on the Victorian Government to clarify whether it agrees with the Federal Labor Party’s decision to support the introduction of mandatory minimum sentences for certain child sex offences.

Federal Parliament this week passed laws introducing mandatory minimum sentences for child sex offences that are not covered by the States, such as offences conducted overseas.  The laws include a minimum prison sentence of 6 years for paedophiles found guilty of having sex with a child outside of Australia who is under the age of 16, and 5 years prison for paedophiles who use a carriage service for sexual activity with a person under the age of 16.

Ms Maxwell welcomed the Federal laws and said the Federal Labor Party support for minimum sentences for paedophiles would hopefully pave the way for tougher laws in Victoria, including for Derryn Hinch Justice Party’s key policy of a public Register of Convicted Sex Offenders.

Ms Maxwell said that continued reports of serious sex crimes against children demonstrated the need for “loud voices” in the Parliament and community to fight for the rights of victims.

The Victorian Parliament’s Legal and Social Issues Committee will soon conduct a formal inquiry into a public Register of Convicted Sex Offenders.

Quotes by Tania Maxwell MP

“Serious sexual crimes against children are among the most abhorrent offences and we need to be continually and loudly advocating for victims, who are often small children with no voice.”

“Rates of sexual offending against children are increasing, including in the murky world of child pornography on the dark web, and we have to do more to stop the scourge and save children from paedophiles.”