Published: 02 October 2018
Mr Christopher de Souza: To ask the Minister for Home Affairs (a) what is being done to deter the taking of voyeuristic photos or videos involving hidden cameras; and (b) whether there has been an increase in the number of police investigations and prosecutions related to this offence.
1. We encourage victims of voyeurism to make a Police report as soon as possible. It gives us a better chance of apprehending the culprit.Under our current laws, those found guilty of taking voyeuristic photos or videos are liable to imprisonment of up to one year, or a fine, or both.
2. The Penal Code Review Committee (“PCRC”) has made recommendations to strengthen deterrence against voyeurism. It has recommended introducing new offences relating to the making, distribution, possession, and accessing of voyeuristic recordings. The PCRC has also recommended that offenders who make such recordings be liable to imprisonment of up to two years, or a fine, or both, and caning. The penalty will be enhanced if the victim is below 14 years of age.
3. The Government has just completed its public consultation on the PCRC’s recommendations, and will take the public feedback into consideration when making our decisions.
4. The number of voyeurism cases involving hidden cameras investigated by the Police has increased in the last few years. This is partly because more people are willing to step forward to report the cases. Between 2013 and 2017, the number increased from about 150 to about 230 per year. About a quarter of these cases resulted in court prosecution.