Risk Posed by People with Convictions Against Children


DfE, Guidance on Offences Against Children

MAPPA (Multi-Agency Public Protection Arrangements) Guidance


This chapter was refreshed in April 2022.

Potentially Dangerous Offenders, Multi-Agency Public Protection Arrangements

Staff from a variety of agencies may from time to time become aware of individuals who present a risk of harm to children, Adults at Risk or other members of the community.

Agencies dealing with offenders have a duty to assess and manage the risk presented by offenders, in particular, the following categories of offenders must be considered through Multi Agency Public Protection Arrangements:

  • Category 1 - Registered Sex Offenders who are required to notify the police of their name, address and other personal details, under the terms of the Sexual Offences Act 2003. The length of the registration period is set by the courts when the offender is sentenced. It might be for anything from 12 months to life, depending on the age of the offender, the age of the victim and the nature of the offence;
  • Category 2 - Violent offenders and some sex offenders who are not required to register:
    • An offender convicted (or found not guilty by reason of insanity or to be unfit to stand trial and to have done the act charged) of murder or an offence specified under Schedule 15 of the Criminal Justice Act 2003 (CJA 2003) Schedule 15 Criminal Justice Act 2003 who received a sentence of 12 months or more or a hospital order;
    • An offender barred from working with children under the DBS Vetting and Barring Scheme (or subject to a Disqualification Order for an offence listed under Schedule 4 of the Criminal Justice and Court Services Act 2000, which preceded this Scheme);
  • Category 3 - Other dangerous offenders: a person who has been cautioned, reprimanded, warned or convicted of an offence which indicates that he or she is capable of causing serious harm and requires multi-agency management at level 2 or 3. The offence might not be one specified in Sch.15 of the CJA 2003.

For the three groups of offenders referred to in the previous paragraph, agencies must assess the potential risk in terms of imminence and seriousness, and manage the cases at one of three levels:

  • Level One - Low to medium harm which can be managed by a single agency sharing information as necessary with other agencies;
  • Level Two - High risk of harm cases which require the involvement of more than one agency. In Lincolnshire the Probation and Police Services hold regular "Divisional Risk Meetings" to which all agencies are invited in order to manage the risk presented by this group of offenders. (Contact details for Divisional Risk Meetings, see Local Contact);
  • Level Three - Very high risk of harm cases (critical few) whose management falls within the remit of the Multi Agency Public Protection Panel.

The Multi-Agency Public Protection Panel (MAPPP) has been established as a result of a protocol agreed by Lincolnshire County Council, the Police, Probation Provider, Lincolnshire Health Authority and all 7 Housing Authorities operating within Lincolnshire. MAPPP aims to identify people who are considered to be dangerous (within the definition below) and to manage the risk of serious harm they may present.

Dangerous within this context includes those people who:

  • have been convicted of a serious offence including murder, rape, offences against children, serious indecent assault, serious drugs offences; and
  • are assessed on the basis of available information as presenting an abnormally high or potentially unacceptable level of risk.

In addition, offenders against whom a Sex Offender Order under the Crime and Disorder Act 1998 is being considered will be referred to MAPPP. In certain circumstances individuals who are strongly suspected to have committed serious offences, but have not been convicted, may be considered.

Each of the relevant agencies is represented on MAPPP by a senior representative, who together form the core group. Any member of staff wishing to make a referral to MAPPP should do so via the agency's core group member, using the process agreed within that agency.