Moscow: Paedophiles in Russia may soon face chemical castration under a new law approved by the upper house of the Russian Parliament - the Federation Council.
Currently, paedophiles only get away with mandatory medical treatment, but under new draft law, they will face chemical castration, life imprisonment and psychiatric drug treatment, Ria Novosti reported.
Chemical castration is being introduced in Russia for the first time to deter paedophilia. The new bill, which also increases penalties for most kinds of sex crimes against minors, was introduced by the Kremlin in October and generated much debate and revision.
Convicts in other types of sex crimes involving minors will have the option of voluntarily seeking chemical castration when pleading for parole, the bill said.
Dodging "mandatory medical treatment" after release on parole will be punishable with one year in jail. Ombudsman for Children Pavel Astakhov said in 2010 that 98 per cent of convicted paedophiles repeat the offence after release, but for those who undergo chemical castration the figure is only 3 per cent.
The stricter paedophilia laws in Russia come as child abuse has skyrocketed in the country in 2010, increasing several times year-on-year for most type of sex crimes, Astakhov said last year.
The dismal situation prompted activists to start vigilante groups tracking down paedophiles to report them to police or, in some cases, beat them up without involving the police.
Poland is the only other country to allow forced chemical castration as punishment. Portugal and the UK also recently used chemical castration when handing down sentences in sexual abuse cases.