Germany Advised to Stop Castrating Sex Offenders

Anti-torture panel at human rights watchdog calls practice 'degrading'
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 22, 2012 1:58 PM CST
An anti-torture panel has advised Germany to stop castrating sex offenders.   (Shutterstock)

(Newser) – Germany doesn't mess around when it comes to sex offenders—serious offenders can volunteer to be surgically castrated—but now an anti-torture committee says the country should put an end to that practice, Reuters reports. The panel at the Strasbourg Council, Europe's top human rights watchdog, called the practice "degrading" today, and added that there is no evidence it prevents men from committing sex crimes again.

Surgical castrations, which are offered as part of the treatment for serious German sex offenders older than age 25, are rare: The past decade has seen fewer than five performed per year. In reply, the German government said the castration practice is under review, but maintained that there may be medical grounds to continue offering the procedure. The Czech Republic also allows sex offenders to opt for the surgery. (Read more Germany stories.)

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