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More evidence of Labour's soft-on-crims policies

Tony Ryall National Police Spokesman

9 February 2004

More evidence of Labour's soft-on-crims policies

Labour's alternative to periodic detention, community work, is fast becoming a sick joke as offenders are given second and third chances to reoffend, says National's Police spokesman Tony Ryall.

A judge in Gisborne is reported today saying he is "astounded" that repeat community work absconders are being given second and third chances to reoffend. Judge Tony Adeane says offenders with a history of two or more breaches are imprisoned in Hawke's Bay, but in Gisborne "there appears to be an ongoing tolerance".

Mr Ryall says community work is being run on a Mickey Mouse basis with little consistency around the country, and is more evidence that Labour is letting the justice system fall into disrepair.

Answers to parliamentary questions by Mr Ryall reveal that only 69% of offenders sentenced to community work completed their required hours.

"Most of these offenders complete only 90% of their sentence and the Government lets them off the other 10%. This means that few offenders are serving their full community work sentence.

"But the situation is worse than even these figures suggest because they do not include people who are being prosecuted for failing to turn up or who are excused from attending. "Community work is already an easy option and the Government is making it easier still.

"Offenders will only know the public is serious about crime when the system demands accountability from them. Judge Adeane's warning should be a wake-up call to Labour's soft-on-crims approach," says Mr Ryall.

Ends

Answer to Parliamentary Question WQ 11005:

Sent: Tuesday, 11 November 2003 4:10 p. m.
Cc: Tony Ryall Subject:
11005 (2003) Published - Corrections - Normal Reply 11005 (2003) - PQ 03-26278 Com

Question: Further to the reply to written question No 10681 (2003), how many of the 6,095 offenders sentenced to the 745,504 hours of community work, actually completed all the hours for which they were sentenced to community work, and for those that did not what proportion of their sentence hours did they serve in 10% bands?

Portfolio: Corrections

Minister: Hon Paul Swain

Date Lodged:31./10/2003

Answer Text: Please see answer attached.

Attachment: PQ 03-26278 Community WorkTony Ryall.doc

Date Received: 11/11/2003

Offenders who comply with the requirements of the sentence of Community Work are eligible for up to 10% remission of the total number of hours imposed. Of the 6095 offenders, 4234 completed all the hours they were required to complete (i.e 91 to 100% of the sentenced hours) The remainder completed hours in the following 10% bands:


Number of
offenders % of sentenced hours completed.

209 81 to 90%
184 71 to 80%
155 61 to 70%
173 51 to 60%
160 41 to 50%
174 31 to 40%
214 21 to 30%
453 11 to 20%
141 0 to 10%


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