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Soothing murderer's feelings with $1200 PC madness

Hon Tony Ryall MP

National Law & Order spokesman

23 August 2004

Soothing murderer's feelings with $1200 is more PC madness

The Privacy Act is completely out of hand when a convicted murderer can get a payout for "hurt feelings" because he couldn't read all of a letter about himself, says National's Law & Order spokesman Tony Ryall.

He is commenting on a report that the Human Rights Review Tribunal has awarded Andrew Ronald MacMillan $1200 for hurt feelings and humiliation because the Corrections Department did not show him all of a letter that made allegations about his behaviour while he was on temporary release from jail.

He was serving a life sentence for murdering Dunedin 17-year-old Jayne McLellan in 1988.

The report comes after National last week revealed official papers showing the Privacy Act was protecting child-sex offenders' rights in Dunedin.

"This is one of the most appalling cases of political correctness ever reported," Mr Ryall says.

"The Human Rights Review Tribunal decision is completely barmy. This decision shows how far Labour's political correctness has infested the justice system.

"What about the hurt and suffering of the victim and her family? What about their feelings of loss of loved ones gone forever?

"National last week revealed that the Privacy Act protected child-sex offenders by stopping Government departments talking about them. That is just as ridiculous.

"The Privacy Act should be gutted and completely revamped," Mr Ryall says.

"It was never supposed to be about protecting offenders' rights. We should start again with something that puts the rights of ordinary law-abiding citizens above those of criminals".

Ends

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