Poland plans tougher penalties for sex offenders
PR dla Zagranicy
Poland’s justice minister has announced plans for tougher penalties for sex offences after a number of brutal attacks made the front pages in Poland.
Zbigniew Ziobro. Photo: PAP/Tomasz Gzell.
Justice Minister Zbigniew Ziobro said the reforms would mean jail time of eight years to life for rapists whose victims died, while offenders would face five to 25 years for child rape.
The reforms are also expected to impose minimum three-year prison terms for rapists who use guns, knives or incapacitating agents, and would ensure courts issue protection orders at the request of victims.
Ziobro said reforms were needed because Poland’s criminal code has some of the laxest punishments for sex offenders in the European Union. He indicated that punishments for other serious offences would also be stepped up.
Ziobro added that the changes would be approved by the government “as fast as possible”.
The announcement comes after last month’s brutal gang rape of a Polish 26-year-old woman on a beach in Rimini, Italy, and an assault on her husband by four people of Middle Eastern and African descent, three of them minors.
Ziobro on Thursday said the alleged attackers would face harsher penalties in Italy than in Poland if they are found guilty.
Poland has sent a task force to Rimini to investigate the case alongside Italian authorities.
Deputy Justice Minister Patryk Jaki recently said Warsaw was considering negotiating the attackers’ extradition to Poland.
In August, police in Poland found the body of a strangled 20-year-old in a couch in her suspected attacker's apartment, while another woman died in hospital after three men held her captive and raped her over ten days. (vb/pk)