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Risk of flight – or risk of death – which is more important

Risk of flight – or risk of death – which is more important

It appears that risk-of-flight is more important than the risk-of-death says a leading victim’s advocacy organization.

The Sensible Sentencing Trust says that while agreeing with the decision to deny bail to Kim Dotcom the decision means that the accused risk-of-flight is more important than a victim’s risk-of-death.

In yesterdays decision Judge David McNaughton denied bail to Kim Dotcom for breach of copyright charges saying there was a significant risk of flight.

Judge McNaughton is the same Judge who granted bail to a man accused of kidnapping 18 year old Christie Marceau. Despite strong opposition from Police the accused was granted bail to an address within close proximity of the Marceau family home.

On the 7th November 2011 the young man accused of her kidnapping knocked on the door of the Marceau family home in Hillcrest and stabbed Christie who died in her mothers arms.

Sensible Sentencing Trust Spokesman Garth McVicar said the two cases by the same Judge highlighted the need for bail reforms to prevent similar tragedies and an annual performance review of Judges to eliminate those who get it wrong.

“Christie should be alive today. If Judge David McNaughton had listened to Police and done his job properly she would be.”

Mr. McVicar said his organization and the Marceau family and supporters were in the process of planning action to reform bail legislation to give Police the power to veto a Judges decision where public safety was an issue.

“We are also contemplating further action to ensure Judges who get it wrong are held accountable for their actions.”

“In every other profession individuals are responsible for decisions they make – a surgeon can be struck off the medical register for negligence –OSH will sue an employer if an employee is hurt.”

“There should be a rigorous annual review of Judges to ensure the same level of accountability that the rest of society is subject to.”


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