575 inmates on ‘three-strikes’ ladder

NZ Herald 17 Oct 2011
One prisoner only – a recidivist robber – has earned the infamy of having a second “strike” to his name since the introduction of the three-strikes system for sexual or violent offences. But 574 others have earned a first strike. The Sentencing and Parole Reform Act, which established the system of harsher sentences for repeat offenders, came into effect last June. The system is potentially a hot issue for the election, as Labour’s law and order spokesman Clayton Cosgrove has said the law would likely be repealed if Labour won power. “It would take something seismic to convince me that three strikes should be retained,” Mr Cosgrove said last week, though he did not say what would happen to those who already had strikes to their name.