Being on the sex offenders register (SOR)

Since 1997, anyone cautioned or convicted for a sexual offence is put on the sex offenders register (SOR). This includes anyone who commits a sexual offence on the internet.

Under the Sexual Offences Act, all those on the sex offenders register must register with the police within three days of their conviction or release from prison. If you are convicted, you will be required to go to your local police station and sign the register. If you do not register, you will be charged with another criminal offence.

You are required to provide the following information at registration:

  • Full name and any other names used (aliases)
  • The addresses of any properties you stay in for more than seven days a year (non-consecutive)
  • Date of birth
  • National insurance number
  • Passport details

In addition, you must notify the police:

  • Of all foreign travel
  • If you are living or staying with a person aged under 18, for 12 hours or more
  • Of certain credit card and bank account details

You will be required to go to the police station on a regular basis in order to sign a document stating that you are still complying with SOR regulations. If you have no fixed address, you will be required to go to the police station once a week.

Failure to notify the police on any of the above or of any changes to any of the above is a criminal offence.

How long will I be on the sex offender register?

This will depend on the offence you have committed and the sentence you have been given. If you are convicted of offences relating to online sexual behaviour involving children, you could receive:

Length of the sentence: Length of time on SOR:
Custodial sentence of 30 months or more: Indefinite notification
Custodial sentence of more than six months but fewer than 30 months: Ten years
Custodial sentence of six months or less: Seven years
Any other outcome such as a community order or fine: Five years
Caution: Two years
A conditional discharge: Notification requirements apply for the period of the discharge

For further information about the SOR visit the charity Unlock’s website.

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