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Police policy - More Police on the beat

Police policy - More Police on the beat

Executive Summary

National will lead a crack down on violent crime and the causes of violent crime. We will put more Police on the beat. We will instill a belief in criminals that they will get caught. We can prevent crime through more frontline officers and stronger powers to deal with the gangs controlling the spiraling trade in methamphetamine. National will keep the heat on burglars.

National’s Approach

National will:

Put 500 extra frontline Police on the street over three years
Lead a crack down on violent crime and its causes
Fund Police training in Auckland
Strengthen powers to confiscate the assets of convicted drug dealers
Review the possession for supply thresholds for methamphetamine
Expand court-ordered DNA testing to burglary suspects
Keep the heat on burglars
National’s Law and Order and Youth Justice policies support this programme.


Violent crime is out of control. National will lead a crack down on violent crime and its causes. We will focus on the spiraling methamphetamine drug trade and the gangs that control this illegal trade. We will put more police on the beat and closer to the community. Instilling a belief in criminals that they will be caught is the focus of National’s approach to policing. We aim to keep New Zealanders safe in their homes and on the streets.

The Problems

Under Labour-Alliance, violent crime has gone through the roof. After several years of decline the violent crime rate has increased 10.9% in the past two years. Violent crime is at its highest in recorded history. In Auckland, violent crime has soared 19.9%. Thousands of New Zealanders have become victims, suffering pain and anguish as a result of violent attacks.

Police around New Zealand are under considerable pressure. While extra officers and resources have been pumped into the Highway Patrol, frontline police numbers are static or falling in many parts of the country. Greater Auckland staffing levels are in crisis. The Government has cut the budget for foot and mobile patrols. A lack of frontline officers sees an increasing number of crimes going uninvestigated. Police presence on the street is becoming rare. Criminals know the chances of being caught are dropping.

The gang-controlled drug Methamphetamine is behind much of the increasing violent crime. Police are losing the battle against the drug-dealing gangs, as "meth" reaches deeper and deeper into the community. Police need additional powers to confiscate the illegal gains of convicted drug dealers; currently the police can only confiscate assets they can prove came from the transactions for which the dealer was convicted.

The threshold for being considered a supplier of "meth" is too high.

National’s Approach

National believes a stronger Police presence on the beat is the most effective method of detecting and preventing crime. Violent crime is so out of control that we believe that personal safety on our streets and in our homes should become the Police’s top priority.

Two things have been shown to reduce crime: the fear of being caught, and the fear of imprisonment. Extra frontline police will increase the likelihood of apprehension, and this was a key factor behind New York’s success in reducing crime. National’s sentencing policy will incarcerate criminals longer. National’s youth justice and families at risk policies will work together to reduce offending.

National’s commitment to extra frontline staff is in addition to the current government’s recruitment levels.

National will

Put 500 extra frontline Police on the beat over three years.
Lead a crack down on violent crime and its causes.
In cracking down on the "methamphetamine" industry, we must crack down on the drug-dealing gangs. To do this we need to imprison their members and confiscate their financial assets. National will reverse the onus of proof for convicted drug-dealers; they will have to prove that their assets were legally obtained or they will be confiscated. Police estimate one gang in Auckland has accumulated assets in excess of $10 million.

Police need the additional powers of search that would come from a re-classification of the drug "Methamphetamine". Current presumption of possession for supply threshold is too high at 56 grams.

National will

Strengthen powers to confiscate the assets of convicted drug-dealers.
Review the possession for supply thresholds for methamphetamine.
DNA testing is the new fingerprinting. Many burglary scenes contain blood, saliva or hairs that can identify the offender. Current DNA legislation prevents the police from obtaining a court order to compulsorily require a DNA sample from a suspected burglar. National will keep the heat on burglars and target improved clearance rates.

National will:

Keep the heat on burglars
Expand court ordered DNA testing for burglary suspects.


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