Havering authorities powerless to stop paedophile moving close to school
�Havering authorities are powerless to stop a convicted paedophile from living only a few hundred metres from a primary school.
The man, who the Recorder has chosen not to name, is staying in a Newham bail hostel but is free to return to the house he owns after serving eight years of a 15-and-a-half year sentence for abusing children.
Conservative Cllr Barry Oddy said: “Ideally this would not happen. The problem we have is that this person owns the property. If it was rented or leased it would be different.
“I am not comfortable at all with the situation but I am sure the safer neighbourhood team and local police will be checking on him.”
He added: “In an ideal world there would be an exclusion zone around schools and playgrounds, but it would be challenged under human rights laws and those idiots in Europe would go against it.”
The man, now in his late 60s, sexually assaulted a number of foster children – some as young as five – over an eight-year period.
After the conviction, a detective working on the case described him as “evil” and said he would “never be allowed to work with or associate with children ever again”.
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The crimes did not take place in the borough.
His home is in a road running parallel to that of the main entrance of the school.
A spokesman for Havering Police, which is leading the man’s reintegration, said public safety was the “first and foremost priority” for officials.
He said: “Police and all the relevant agencies work in partnership, always acting in the best interests of the public in order to safeguard society.
“In this case, police and all the other relevant agencies are aware of the situation and have been working closely together to develop well-informed, responsible and practical decisions that are designed to protect the community.”
The police work in co-ordination with the prison and probation services and other bodies, including Havering Council, under Mappa (Multi-Agency Public Protection Arrangements) to protect the public.
The police spokesman added: “We would like to reassure the public that the police and all the other agencies concerned take this issue very seriously.”