Parliament

Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search

 

Judges Getting it Right on Open Justice

Judges Getting it Right on Open Justice

Wednesday 15th Nov 2000 Stephen Franks Media Release -- Justice

Justice Robertson got it right in refusing name suppression to an offender who applied for police diversion. “The judges are reaffirming common sense and the principle of open public justice and getting tougher on crime, while the Government just prattles about its sentencing review” says ACT Justice Spokesman, Stephen Franks.

“We’ve been through 30 years of increasing confusion as ‘we know best’ liberals have driven secrecy into the Courts. Open justice was one of the proudest parts of our heritage. And recently the Court of Appeal has started to reclaim it. The New Zealand Herald stood up for ordinary New Zealanders in appealing the billionaire name suppression case. This latest case, reported in the media today, continues the trend.

“Officials worried about the ‘needs’ of the criminal will fight this. They don’t want to send the message that crime doesn’t pay. They believe in ‘programmes’ – counselling and therapy – instead of costs to the offender. They don’t accept that the first deterrent to crime should be concern about your reputation and how shame will affect your family. ACT says personal responsibility must go together with freedom.

“These officials are in charge of the Government’s Sentencing Review Project. Justice Robertson’s judgement will be a political problem, because the Minister of Justice wants “clean slate” laws. They would prohibit telling even a previously reported truth about someone’s past.

“The Minister of Justice is good at implying that weak judges give criminals the view that the law doesn’t mean what it says. Some do. But the judges are not to blame in this. The judges did not create name suppression laws. The judges did not pass the Privacy Act. It is not the judges who let criminals off more than half of their sentences, on parole.

“But the officials will wring their hands. They should get out of the way. Let the age old sanction of shame work again even for people correctly sent to diversion because there is little point in a formal sentence.

“It is nearly a year since the Withers Referendum got over 90% support for a focus on victims and punishment that meant something. The Government’s sentencing review has produced nothing in all this time. Drafting convincing excuses will get harder for them, not easier. People are realising who is really to blame for spurious sentencing,” said Stephen Franks.

ENDS

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

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Scoop 3.0: How You Can Help Scoop’s Evolution

Entering into its third decade of operation, the Scoop news ecosystem is set to undergo another phase of transformation and evolution.

We have big plans for 2018 as we look to expand our public interest journalism coverage, upgrade our publishing infrastructure and offer even more valuable business tools to commercial users of Scoop. More>>

 
 

Speaking Of Transport: Public Engagement On Wellington Scenarios

“Our work on possible solutions for Wellington’s transport future is ongoing, but has progressed to the stage where we’re ready to share our ideas with the public and seek their feedback to help guide our next steps...” More>>

ALSO:

Parental Leave: National's Time-Sharing Change Fails

National has proposed a change to the Parental Leave and Employment Protection Amendment Bill that would allow both parents to take paid parental leave at the same time, if that is what suits them best. More>>

ALSO:

Train Free Thursday: Workers Strike To Defend Terms Of Employment

"They signed up to these conditions a year ago when they got the contract for Wellington's rail services. Now they're trying to increase profits by squeezing frontline workers." More>>

ALSO:

Seclusion: Ombudsman Emphasises Importance Of Monitoring

Disability Rights Commissioner Paula Tesoriero says that while there have been changes to the Education (Update) Amendment Act 2017 to prohibit the use of seclusion, the report is an important reminder of the importance of regular monitoring of schools. More>>

ALSO:

United Future History: "All Good Things Must End"

'We’re extremely proud of what we’ve achieved over the past 15 years, working alongside the government of the day, both National and Labour.' Mr Light told members on Monday. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The TPP Outcome, And The Hobbit Law

Somehow the Trans Pacific Partnership trade deal has come lurching back from the dead – and as predicted in this column last week, the member countries gathered in Vietnam have announced a deal in broad principle, shunted aside until a later date the stuff on which they don’t agree, and declared victory. More>>

Agreeing To Differ: Greens Maintain Opposition To TPPA
“The Green Party has long opposed the TPPA. The new proposed deal, which came out of the weekend’s talks, still contains key ISDS concessions to corporations that put our democracy at risk, so our position remains the same,” said Green Party trade spokesperson Golriz Ghahraman. More>>

ALSO:

Monitoring Report: A New Chapter For Children’s Rights In New Zealand?

The Children’s Commissioner is calling on the country to embrace children’s rights to ensure their overall well-being. More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

Featured InfoPages

Opening the Election