On 1 April 2013, Police Scotland was introduced, which consolidated the previous eight police forces into a national force.

Each of the 13 Divisions has a dedicated Offender Management Unit (OMU) with specialist officers working in partnership through MAPPA to manage Registered Sex Offenders. A National Offender Management Unit (NOMU) was introduced to support Divisional OMU’s and to provide governance, audit and compliance in respect of all areas of offender management.

The National Offender Management Unit is responsible for collating and publishing statistics in respect of Registered Sex Offenders. The following table represents the current statistics in respect of Registered Sex Offenders in Scotland as of 21/03/2018.                                                                                                                            

 Division Registered Sex Offenders in the Community Registered Sex Offenders in custody/hospital
 Aberdeen, Aberdeenshire and Moray (North East) 397 129
 Forth Valley 211
 Tayside 364 130
 Edinburgh 360 123
 The Lothians and Scottish Borders 345 106
 Greater Glasgow 602 217
 Renfrewshire and Inverclyde 168 55
 Argyle and West Dunbartonshire 143 46
 Highland and Islands 226 63
 Fife 332 117
 Lanarkshire 463 138
 Ayrshire 351 102
 Dumfries and Galloway 127 40
 National Total 4089 1332

As of 31st March 2018, Police Scotland has 12 Wanted Registered Sex Offenders and no Missing RSO’s. Enquiries to date indicate 12 are outwith the UK.

* RSO – Registered Sex Offender

* In custody includes those RSOs who are currently in hospital


What is the difference between a wanted and missing sex offender?

A Missing person is defined as anyone whose whereabouts is unknown and:

  • where the circumstances are out of character; or
  • the context suggests the person may be subject to crime; or
  • the person is at risk of harm to themselves or another.

A Wanted Registered Sex Offender is defined as those who are subject to the notification requirements of the Sexual Offences Act 2003 and who have a live warrant in force.

Police Scotland treat all missing and wanted Registered Sex Offenders with the utmost seriousness and will carry out all possible enquiries to trace their whereabouts and to re-establish the management required to protect the public. On all occasions a Senior Investigating Officer (SIO) of a rank no less than Inspector will be appointed to lead these investigations.