SOUTH Korea is poised to become the first Asian country to use chemical castration on child-sex offenders.
Such is the level of disgust at a series of rapes that a bill prescribing the hormonal neutralisation of testosterone in “sexual deviants” aged 19 or over was passed by 137 votes to 13. President Lee Myung-bak is expected to sign it into law when he returns from abroad.
The original version of the bill was introduced two years ago after a 58-year-old man attacked an eight-year-old girl. However, many were concerned by the science behind the treatment, and pressure to pass it waned until a renewed spate of attacks this year.
Last week, a 44-year-old repeat sex offender was charged with kidnapping a girl, 8, and raping her, and an investigation began at the weekend into the case of a Vietnamese girl snatched from a street during the day and raped.
The punishment, if ordered, will be described in court as “medical treatment”.