Sexual offences courts to be reintroduced

2013-08-06 11:55

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Sexual offences courts are set to be reintroduced, with 57 regional courts to be upgraded to such courts within the next three years.

Justice Minister Jeff Radebe announced in Pretoria this morning that government hoped that the reintroduction of these courts would help improve the conviction and reporting rate.

Victims will be reporting these crimes more “because they will know that the system will work better,” he said.

Although there were 74 sexual offences courts in 2005, these eventually fell into disuse.

Some challenges included the lack of a dedicated budget, the lack of a special legal framework, poor visibility of the courts in remote areas, not enough space in courts and lack of training for court personnel.

About R20 million had been set aside initially to refurbish the courts, and more money is set to be made available later.

This year, 22 courts will be refurbished in this financial year, with the rest to follow later, Radebe said.

- City Press

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