Sex offender register should be national: NSW

NSW has cautioned against introducing a public register for sex offenders.

Debate about a register was reignited after serial pedophile and child rapist Brett Peter Cowan was sentenced last week to at least 20 years in jail for the murder of Sunshine Coast schoolboy Daniel Morcombe in 2003.

Following Cowan’s sentencing, Daniel’s mother Denise called for a child sex offenders’ register.

NSW Premier Barry O’Farrell says if there is to be a register, it should be a national one.

‘‘It’s clear that in a country with six states and two territories, if there’s to be a register, it should be a national register,’’ he told reporters in Sydney.

But he said his views on the issue were ‘‘guided’’ by child protection group Bravehearts, which says the continued detention of dangerous sex offenders is better than having a register.

The group is concerned a public register could lead to innocent people being targeted.

‘‘Bravehearts have expressed concerns about the impact of having a public register,’’ Mr O’Farrell said.

‘‘My point is that we will look at those issues.’’