Yesterday a Canadian man from Calgary, Alberta was sentenced to 25 years in a U.S. prison. John Wrenshall had already spent time in jail previously for sexually abusing choir boys at a Calgary church, but clearly had not learned his lesson. When he got out, he decided to set up shop in Thailand and invited men from all over the world to abuse the 4 to 12 year-old Thai boys he held in his home. You can get more details about the case from this article by the NY Daily News.
As I read this horrific and sad story, one question kept coming to mind. Why was Wrenshall allowed to keep his passport? Why was he allowed to travel to an impoverished country full of vulnerable children? Did customs even know he had served time in jail for sexually abusing young boys? If so, did they not find it disconcerting that his destination was a sex tourism hot spot?
This is where rights and freedoms come in. When you get out of prison you have ‘paid’ for your crime. Legally at least. But perhaps some rights must be surrendered forever when one chooses to engage in certain behaviours.
What do you think? Should the passports of pedophiles be confiscated forever? And as I asked in a previous post, what do our prisons need to do to be more effective in dealing with sexual predators?
Thanks to my friend Allison for sending the articles my way!