Six out of 10 people convicted of sexually abusing children escape prison and are either fined, given community service or a suspended sentence, the AD reported on Saturday. And half of those convicted of the most serious assault on under-12s were not given prison terms, the paper said.
Of those sentenced to prison, half were given terms of less than a year. Last year 385 people were convicted of serious child abuse.
Victim support group Slachtofferhulp said a prison sentence was important to victims and their parents because ‘they were no longer scared they would meet their attacker on the street.’
A spokesman for the sentencing council Raad van de Rechtspraak, which represents judges, said every case was judged on its own merits. ‘Sex crimes often take place within a family and prison can have disastrous affects, such as job losses and family break-down.’
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