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The use of psychiatric and psychological evidence in the assessment of terrorist offenders

Causes of radicalisationDe-radicalisationRadicalisation

The Journal of Forensic Psychiatry & PsychologyJournal abstract

This paper focuses on the prediction of violent recidivism among individuals convicted of politically motivated violence – terrorism. We argue that the assumptions of general violence prediction models, used in risk assessment procedures with other offenders, do not necessarily apply to terrorist offenders. Subsequently we discuss the assumption of general expertise in mental health professionals in such cases. Furthermore, we describe the role of professionals in this field, their expertise, and the use of psychological and psychiatric evidence. We are particularly concerned about the use of psychometric testing. Finally we make some recommendations about the approach to be used and the expertise required in assessing risk in politically motivated offenders.

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