A controversial pilot programme to discover whether lie-detector tests can help to manage sex offenders is being run by Newcastle University. The scheme, under which sex offenders will be made to take the tests as part of their conditions of probation, will be led by Don Grubin, professor of forensic psychiatry. "Polygraph testing of sex offenders is part of a package that is aimed at preventing new sex offences from being committed," he said. "Disclosures made during the polygraph examinations, as well as conclusions drawn from passed or failed examinations, allow probation officers and the police to intervene to reduce risk." There will be 24 participants in the three-year trial.