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Alexander: Ironic twist to Beehive presentation

Media Statement
For immediate release
Tuesday, 22 July, 2003

Alexander: Ironic twist to Beehive presentation

There is a real irony in mass murderer Raymond Ratima appearing before the Parole Board today, the very same day that the Sensible Sentencing Trust will be presenting the families of victims of some of New Zealand's most horrific crimes to MPs in the Beehive, United Future's Marc Alexander says.

"One can only hope that the Parole Board makes the same link, and keeps this guy where he belongs - behind bars," Mr Alexander, United Future's law and order spokesman, said.

Mr Alexander, a member of Sensible Sentencing since its earliest days, is co-hosting the event in Parliament today.

"This is a very important occasion. It's absolutely vital that this country's lawmakers are made fully aware of the impact that serious crime has on the lives of so many ordinary Kiwis.

"This is an important step in doing that, and it is part of why I am a member of Sensible Sentencing," he said.

"And that's a message that I hope gets to the Parole Board in Christchurch today.

"Ratima has served just 11 years of a life sentence for wiping out seven members of his family. One can only hope that the board is listening to the concern of your average Kiwi.

"And it wouldn't have been a bad thing if the board members were in Wellington today to listen to those who have lost family members to monsters like Ratima, rather than contemplating returning him to the streets," Mr Alexander said.

Ends.

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