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Government Losing The Battle On Crime

29 August 2002

Government Losing The Battle On Crime

The Government's fallen flat on its face with its election campaign claims of a record low crime rate with today's release of the official crime statistics, says National's Police spokesman, Tony Ryall.

"The figures show that for the first time in six years, overall crime is up - 2.8%. Every crime category is up - violence by 2%, property abuse by 7.4%, dishonesty by 3.1% and sexual offences by a staggering 13.6%.

"Before the election, the Government said crime was coming down and the streets are safer. The Justice Minister said National's claims of a crime wave were a "beat up" and the Prime Minister said in a television debate that statistics proved crime was at a 13-year low.

"Don't believe it. The figures out today for the year ending 30 June show that the chances of getting mugged or threatened are higher than ever. The rise in violent crime continues unabated - at 112.7 offences per 10,000 population, the highest rate ever recorded.

"Even street level offences like dishonesty and property abuse are up for the first time in years. Yet the Government would have us believe that our streets are safer.

"Offenders know that police resources are stretched to breaking point and that the chances of getting caught are getting lower and lower. The Police Minister simply can't ignore the fact any longer.

"Many voters believed the Minister's claims about the crime rate - if only they had seen the figures," says Mr Ryall.


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