NEW figures have revealed where more than 500 registered sex offenders are living in the Lothians.
The figures show the policing areas where 316 registered sex offenders (RSOs) are staying in the Capital, and reveal nearly a third are housed in the north of the city.
Outside the city, a total of 32 stay in the Livingston area, with another 20 in Broxburn and 19 live in and around Musselburgh.
Police chiefs said public safety was the “main priority” while monitoring RSOs in the community under Multi-Agency Public Protection Arrangements (Mappa).
The launch last March of the force’s Keeping Children Safe scheme also allows concerned parents to find out from police whether sex offenders have had contact with their children, including checking out neighbours.
Two paedophiles who had access to children in Edinburgh were identified by the scheme in its first month.
Councillor Iain Whyte, who represents the Inverleith ward as well as serving as police board convener, said: “Whether there is cause for concern about more registered sex offenders being in north Edinburgh depends on the supervision arrangements they are under. That is where Mappa, as well as other schemes like Keeping Children Safe, come in.
“Residents can be assured that work is going on to keep people safe, but that requires constant vigilance from the different authorities such as police, criminal justice and social work.”
Eight registered sex offenders living in the Lothians were arrested and charged with sexual crimes between April and December last year.
Police are monitoring 84 registered sex offenders in the Lothians who are deemed to be a “high risk” of reoffending while two others are considered to be “very high risk”.
In November, it was revealed that 43 individuals were subject to Sexual Offence Prevention Orders in the Lothians, which impose strict limits on their movements and whom they can contact.
A police spokesman said: “Sex offenders are monitored in the community under the Multi-Agency Public Protection Arrangements, which involve police service, local authorities, the NHS, Scottish Prison Service and other partners.
“Public safety is always the main priority in all cases. Whilst it remains the main priority, a balance is required between public safety and the right of the individual. All aspects of cases are carefully considered at every stage of the process, from psychological and risk assessments to places of residence and potential security issues. A number of measures can be put in place to manage offenders in the community and these are monitored by dedicated police officers and officials from partner organisations.”