A Queensland town is at breaking point, with 170 convicted paedophiles roaming free, and only one officer to keep an eye on them.
MP Dan Purdie, a former child protection investigations officer with Queensland Police, shared the shocking statistic to Parliament last month.
He said while two officers were tasked to the job, one had to step away from the role due to stress, leaving just one police officer to watch over the town's most vile criminals.
'Right here in Townsville... there are around 170 registered child sex offenders being monitored by only two dedicated CPOR officers,' he said.
'One of these officers has been reassigned to other duties due to stress, leaving just one officer to try to monitor around 170 paedophiles.'
The figures are shocking considering recent and high profile arrests of convicted sex offenders who have gone on to offend again.
On Thursday, Townsville man Harley James Wilkes, 25, pleaded guilty to using the internet to procure a child under-16, possession of child exploitation material and other charges.
Convicted sex offender Harley Wilkes (pictured) has returned to jail after pleading guilty to using the internet to procure a child under-16, possession of child exploitation material and other charges - offences he committed within just weeks of his release from jail for abusing children
He had earlier been jailed for four and a half years for abusing seven other children and threatening to kill two of them.
The messages began within a month of his release.
Mr Purdie said the problem was statewide, with 2,800 registered child sex offenders walking free, and only 33 police officers monitoring their movements.
Brett Peter Cowan was already a convicted child sex offender when he abducted, raped and killed 13-year-old Daniel Morcombe in 2003.
He had completed a sex offenders treatment program before he was released from prison, and once told a woman the course had 'cured' his sexual deviancy.
Cowan is now serving life in prison over the young schoolboy's death.
Mr Purdie had earlier likened the current monitoring policy to an 'honesty system', noting the onus was on an offender to contact police if their circumstances have changed - meaning the convicted criminals were responsible to own up if they had moved close to a