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ACT Dismisses Lawyers' Jail Term Claims

Wednesday 11th Oct 2000 Stephen Franks Media Release -- Justice

ACT Justice spokesman Stephen Franks has dismissed claims by lawyers that longer sentences and more preventative detention are not the cure-all for violent crime.

Responding to an article in The New Zealand Herald today (October 11), Mr Franks said the lawyer’s comments are typical of what you see from some people in their line of work.

“They always point to rehabilitation, which is something we would all like to see. However there is no robust evidence of parole or early release having any reliable rehabilitative effect,” he said.

“It is quite irresponsible of these lawyers to oppose something which does protect the public when the only forms of rehabilitation sometimes shown to make a difference seem to involve rare and inspiring individuals of whom New Zealand is far too short.

“In the case of Taffy Hotene, sentenced to a minimum 18-years in jail for the murder of journalist Kylie Jones, the lawyer for the defendant expressed sound common sense in saying that some prisoners should never get out of jail. It is time lawyers were disciplined enough to offer solutions which have been shown to work rather than those we wish would work.”

ENDS

For more information visit ACT online at http://www.act.org.nz or contact the ACT Parliamentary Office at act@parliament.govt.nz.

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