WHEN SHOULD A DANGEROUS CRIMINAL RETURN TO SOCIETY?

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When should a person who has been declared a dangerous criminal be released back into society?This is the question that the Western Cape High Court is contemplating as it considers the case of a man who was jailed in 1998 for serious crimes against children.At the time, Brandon Pietersen of Ravensmead in Cape Town was sentenced for attempted rape, rape and murder.Included in the cases for which he was sentenced, was an incident in which he raped a 12-year-old girl. He was charged and detained at Pollsmoor Prison before he was released on bail.While out on bail, he raped a nine-year-old girl and used a piece of glass to cut her throat.He was jailed for an indefinite period in terms of the Criminal Procedure Act.The applicable section of the act relates to a person deemed “a danger to the physical or mental well-being of other persons and that the community should be protected against”.Netwerk24 reported that he tried to take his own life in prison by swallowing razor blades but later finished rehabilitation programmes and various skills courses.In 2015, Cape Judge President John Hlophe found that he was still a danger to society and that he should be evaluated for parole after three years once he had undergone therapy, Die Son reported.Pietersen appeared before Hlophe in the Western Cape High Court again on Friday.Three correctional services officers surrounded him.The court asked for the clinical psychologist and psychiatrist who treated him to provide their reports by later this month.The Case Management Committee and the Parole Board would also have to file their report.The matter was provisionally postponed to November 16.https://www.news24.com/SouthAfrica/News/when-should-a-dangerous-criminal-return-to-society-court-mulls-case-from-1998-20181103

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