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Prison Mania Exposing Public To unacceptable risk

31st July 2008

Prison Mania Exposing Public To unacceptable risk

The Government has been accused of misleading the public and letting its obsession with prison numbers allow potentially dangerous people to be released on electronic bail.

The Sensible Sentencing Trust say the Prime Minister misled the public by stating that electronic bail would "make our communities safer" when she launched the Effective Interventions package in 2006 which allowed the use of electronic bail.

Trust Spokesman Garth McVicar said that a briefing to Justice CEOs confirmed that electronic bail was being granted to people accused of serious crimes rather than those accused of low-level offences as the Government had promised.

Mr. McVicar said, "Not only are people accused of very serious offences being granted electronic bail but it has been revealed that one in five actually breaches their conditions and one in ten simply walk away".

"Not only is this putting the Police to a massive extra workload it is also exposing the public to an unacceptable risk. The Government should be honest and tell the public how many offences are being committed by those on electronic bail".

"It appears the Government is prepared to expose innocent members of the public to an unacceptable risk in its obsession to reduce the prison population".

ENDS

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