CHAD COMMENT: 'Police working with Mansfield paedophile hunters isn't the green light to become a town of vigilantes'

Chief Constable Craig Guildford said this week; "We have to take the information, keep taking the information, but we have to remind these people of their'responsibilities under the law.
Chief Constable Craig Guildford said this week; "We have to take the information, keep taking the information, but we have to remind these people of their'responsibilities under the law.

It seems an odd policy decision by a police boss on the face of it - embrace the work of vigilante groups to help officers track down potential villains.

It sounds like something straight out of the pages of a Batman comic.

But this is real life and you have to hope Nottinghamshire’s Crime Czar has thought through every possible ramification of this surprising announcement - including the message it sends out to people itching to take action against suspected paedophiles on behalf of society.

Nobody condones child abuse or grooming, but anyone who seeks to bring these monsters to justice has to do it by the book.

The trouble is, there doesn’t appear to be any regulatory body or watchdog for paedophile hunters.

As such, it will be extremely hard to make sure anyone with a misplaced sense of civic duty collars an abuser and not another Christopher Jefferies, the man, lest we forget, whose reputation was destroyed in public as he was accused of murder for basically looking a bit weird.

Yes, there is the law but if those tasked with enforcing it are so stretched as to need the help of amateurs, who will keep them all in check?

If the force is convinced it will keep our children safer in the ever more bewildering world of social media the initiative should be welcomed. But it cannot be allowed to become a free-for-all.