Sentencing law overhaul needed – Labour leader Andrew Little says

Sentencing law overhaul needed so offenders don’t get off ‘scot-free’, Labour leader Andrew Little says
Stuff co.nz 5 October 2016
Family First Comment: Well said.

New Zealand’s sentencing laws need an overhaul to stop offenders “getting off scot-free” without a conviction, Labour leader Andrew Little says.

Little says some judges are getting it wrong when granting discharges without conviction, saying Parliament has to send a message that it is not acceptable.

Wellington rugby player Losi Filipo’s discharge without conviction for a 2015 attack on four people is being appealed by police, while an Auckland man who beat his wife with a hammer was initially granted a discharge without conviction before the High Court overturned the decision.

Little told The Paul Henry Show discharges without conviction in a number of recent cases had “left everybody scratching their heads”.

“When there’s violence involved, when there’s a weapon involved, when you’re attacking a police officer or other frontline person like that, it doesn’t make sense that you kind of get off scot-free.”

While judges had to take certain “aggravating factors” into account when determining a sentence, some did not seem to be giving them enough weight when granting a discharge without conviction.

The courts had a duty to reflect the community’s expectations and concerns about crime.
READ MORE: http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/84975525/Sentencing-law-overhaul-needed-so-offenders-don-t-get-off-scot-free-Labour-leader-Andrew-Little-says
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