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Sex Offender Register Victoria

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Sex Offender Register Victoria

The Sex Offender Register in Victoria contains information about people (“registrable offenders”) who have committed certain sex offences (“registrable offences”). It is governed by the Sex Offenders Registration Act 2004 (Vic) (‘the Act’). A person who is convicted of a registrable offence may be entered onto the Sex Offender Register in Victoria. Some people also refer to the register as the “Sex Offender List”.

The purpose of the Sex Offender Register is to:

The purpose of the Sex Offender Register is to:

  1. Assist in the monitoring and oversight of those convicted of registrable offences, in order to:
    1. Deter registerable offenders from re-offending.
    2. Assist in the investigation of any future offences.

It does this by:

  1. Mandating that registerable offenders keep police informed of their whereabouts and their personal details for a specified period of time; and
  2. Preventing registered sex offenders from volunteering or working in child-related employment.

Classification

Under the Act, all adults sentenced for registrable offences are automatically included on the Sex Offender Register in Victoria. 

Registrable offences are divided into four classes and are listed in the respective schedules in the Act.

  1. SCHEDULE ONE: The most serious sex offences (generally involving penetrative sex with a child);

  2. SCHEDULE TWO: A broad range of sexual offences involving children, including indecent assault of a child and possession of child pornography;

  3. SCHEDULE THREE: Similar offences to schedule one but committed by a ‘serious sexual offender’ against an adult rather than a child; and

  4. SCHEDULE FOUR: Similar offences to schedule two but committed by a ‘serious sexual offender’ against an adult rather than a child.

Reporting obligations

Registered sex offenders are required to report and provide various details to Victoria Police. All registered offenders must report the same information.

The length of reporting depends on the class of offence, the number of offences convicted of and the offender’s age. Adult registered sex offenders are required to report for either eight years, fifteen years or for the rest of their lives. Child registered offenders are required to report for half the period that would apply to an adult offender.

All registered offenders must report the following information to Victoria Police within seven days of sentence or within seven days of being released from custody:

  1. Name or names by which they are known;

  2. Date of birth;

  1. Address of each place they reside or, if homeless, localities they can generally be found;

  2. Telephone number;

  3. Email address;

  4. Name and business address of internet provider;

  5. Internet, instant messaging, chat room or other user names or identities used through the internet or other electronic communication services;

  6. Names and ages of any children with whom they usually live or have unsupervised contact with;

  7. Employment details;

  8. Details of affiliations with any clubs or organisations that have child membership or child participation in their activities;

  9. Details of any motor vehicles they own or drive; details of any existing or former tattoos or permanent distinguishing marks;

  10. Whether required to register and report under corresponding sex offender legislation (in other States);

  11. Details of any periods of government custody since they were either sentenced or released from custody for the registrable offence;

  12. If they travel interstate or overseas; and

  13. Passport number and country of issue.

Registered offenders must also report when intending to travel interstate or overseas. Collectively this information must be reported annually and additionally within seven days of any changes. Failure to report changes when required results in further criminal charges.

How to access the Sex Offenders Register in Victoria

You need police authorisation to access the Sex Offender Register in Victoria.

The police can give the offender’s information to various government departments, authorities or courts if it’s deemed necessary. Including the Department of Justice.

Can I get removed from the Sex Offender Register in Victoria?

A registered offender cannot apply to be removed entirely from the Sex Offender Register. However, there are mechanisms available to registered offenders seeking to have their reporting obligations suspended.  Depending on the facts and circumstances of a particular case, we can advise which mechanism is most suitable. Please contact us here.

Otherwise, in some rare circumstances, a registered offender could seek an ‘exemption’. Registration exemption orders are complex and not available to all registered offenders. On hearing an application for exemption, a court must be satisfied (among other criteria) that:

  1. At any time during the commission of the offence, the registered offender was 18 or 19 years of age; and
  2. At all times during the commission of the offence, was not more than 19 years of age; and
  3. At all times during the commission of the offence, any victim of the offence is of or over the age of 14 years; or
  4. At all times during the commission of the offence, any person depicted or described in any material to which the offence relates is of or over the age of 14 years.

How long do you stay on the register? Once your reporting period is finished, are you removed?

The length of reporting depends on the class of offence, the number of offences convicted of and the offender’s age.

However, generally, adult registered sex offenders are required to report for either eight years for a single offence, fifteen years for two offences or for the rest of their lives for more than two offences.

How can you look up sex offenders in your area? Is the Sex Offenders Register available to the public?

The Sex Offender Register is not available to the wider community.  It is an instrument of policing. There is evidence to suggest from observations of similar schemes internationally that publicising the register actually increases the risk of registered offenders reoffending

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