New treatment proposed for paedophiles
Ministry of Justice interested, but funding remains open
A group of researchers at the Turku-based Swedish-language university Åbo Akademi hope to bring a new kind of treatment for paedophiles to Finland.
The model, which has been under development in Germany, involves preventative therapies for men in high-risk groups who would volunteer for the treatment that takes about a year and a half.
"The treatment methods are not new as such. What is new is that the treatment would be for potential criminals rather than for those who have already committed a crime", says the project’s coordinator Katarina Alanko of Åbo Akademi.
Discussions about the financing have taken place with the Ministry of Justice, for instance. Arto Kujala of the criminal policy section of the ministry expects a decision on the funding to come soon.
"Discussions are still going on, but we have already said that we take a very positive view of the matter. Advance treatment of men with tendencies toward paedophilia is the best possible crime prevention", Kujala says.
The Ministry of Justice would finance only part of the project.
In the initial stages one or two therapy groups would be set up with up to ten people in each one. The therapy, which would take place in Helsinki, would be free of charge.
Under the plan, Finnish therapists would first study the method in Germany, where about 130 people have already undergone the treatment. The therapy is now offered in six clinics in Germany, and more are coming.
Alanko says that criminal complaints about paedophilia have increased last year. He attributes this mainly to a greater awareness and willingness to report the crime.
Previously in HS International Edition:
Prosecution Service wants to examine allegations of paedophilia in Laestadian religious community (7.5.2012)
BREAKING NEWS: Children’s website Habbo temporarily shuts down all discussion groups to secure service against sexual predators (13.6.2012)
Thai police arrest Finnish man on suspicion of child sex offences (16.9.2010)
Police believe dozens of Finns have sex with children in Thailand (26.4.2005)