Germans advertise for paedophiles

July 8, 2005

A German university is running an advertising campaign to sign up paedophiles for a research project designed to control the behaviour of potential sex offenders.

The Institute for Sexual Medicine at Berlin's Charite University is seeking 180 volunteers with paedophilic tendencies to undergo experimental therapy.

The institute has received funding from the Volkswagen Foundation for the paedophile prevention project.

The aim of the study is "to improve the protection of the community by investigating the effectiveness of intervention strategies".

Klaus Michael Beier, director of the institute, said: "We want to reach men who are off the radar at the moment, who feel attracted to children but who are prepared to be treated for it."

The university is using billboard posters and television adverts to reach potential paedophiles.

The advert's slogan is "Do you like children more than you would like to? You can get help now".

The free treatment lasts three years and involves one-to-one therapy, discussion groups and medication.

"We hope to appeal to all those who realise that children play a role in their sexual fantasies," said Christoph Joseph Ahlers, a psychologist at the institute.

"Such people have to learn that they bear no guilt for their feelings, but that they are responsible for their actions," he added.

The institute will treat men who have not yet acted on their urges and those who have committed crimes but have not been caught.

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