Bill targets Internet criminals

Authorities will be able to instantly access the electronic and other correspondence of suspects charged with Internet crimes, particularly those linked to child pornography, if a new draft bill is approved. The Justice Ministry bill, which yesterday received the backing in principle of all political parties during a debate in Parliament, foresees the lifting of the right to confidentiality of correspondence for these suspects. Opposition politicians backed a proposal according to which the statute of limitations should not apply to crimes involving minors. Further reforms will be proposed, heralding closer links between the Justice Ministry and the Data Protection Authority «for the broader public good,» Minister Sotiris Hatzigakis said. The move follows a new bill tabled in Parliament last week under which child abusers or people involved in underage pornography and so-called sex tourism will face up to 10 years in jail and fines of 500,000 euros. The bill will bring Greece in line with EU legislation, making it a crime to travel to a country with the intention of having sex with a minor.