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Goff Telling Half The Story Yet Again

Media Statement By

Tony Ryall

Minister of Justice

14 June, 1999

"Labour Justice Spokesman, Phil Goff, is telling the public only half the story yet again about the Police Association's views on the Government's new Home-Invasion legislation", Justice Minister Tony Ryall said today.

"Mr Goff told Radio New Zealand today that "The Police Association said that it was simply a matter of political expediency that the legislation [the Home-Invasion legislation] was coming through" and they opposed the bill", said Mr Ryall.

"Mr Goff also said that "All of the key submissions have said the Government has gone the wrong way about achieving what it set out to achieve".

"In fact what the Police Association's submission [copy attached] actually said was "The Police Association supports the concept of the proposed Crimes (Home Invasion) Amendment Bill but believes the bill is too broadly focussed and will create problems in applying the principles of the bill to sentencing".

"The Association also said "The Police Association agrees that heavier sentencing while not having an immediate impact on the behaviour of criminals will eventually introduce into the career criminals psyche an understanding that they should keep their offending away from private homes".

"In their summary the Association said "While the Police Association is concerned that this amendment has been brought about by political expediency and that we are concerned that at all times a holistic approach be taken to the whole crime and punishment question, we do see merits in taking an opportunity to instil into the criminal sub culture a knowledge that carrying their criminal activities into private homes will be treated more seriously".

"Mr Goff was a member of the Select Committee that considered this submission. I would have expected he would at least be aware of the Police Associations broad support for the Government's initiative", Mr Ryall concluded.

ENDS

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