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Reparation Rejection The Right Decision

Reparation Rejection The Right Decision

ACT New Zealand Justice Spokesman Stephen Franks today supported an Auckland mother's rejection of reparation from the man who sexually violated her daughter.

"Media reports today describe this solo mother as `debt-ridden'. Reparation of $5,000 must be tempting, but this woman refuses to allow this criminal to buy a lighter sentence," Mr Franks said.

"I agree whole-heartedly with her. Money cannot heal the damage of the sexual violation of a child. The law should have allowed the judge to say something like:

`Of course this won't buy him a light sentence. At best, it could mean he would get the normal sentence, because it should be normal to make amends. If they don't show some remorse, I send them away for longer. Tangible remorse is relevant but, because this was only an offer - and the Government will probably never bother to collect it - I'll ignore it for sentencing purposes. But I advise you to accept - he ought to be doing something for you and your daughter, whatever the sentence. I never take account of offers alone. From experience, they can be empty promises. Money already paid is all I'd recognise'.

"Of course, Justice Minister Phil Goff's politically correct law changes last year don't allow a judge to speak with such commonsense, so we won't see this happening," Mr Franks said.

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