Hipkins happy cosying up to gangs rather than cracking down on them

Less than a month out from the election, Chris Hipkins is out of ideas when it comes to tackling New Zealand’s rising gang problem and is instead happy to keep handing gangs money, National’s Police spokesperson Mark Mitchell says.

“Under Labour’s soft on crime approach, crime has exploded with violent crime up 33 per cent, gang numbers up 70 percent and there are two ram raids a day.

“Yesterday Chris Hipkins said ‘we recognise there is a gang element to much of the increase in violent crime’ but just a few days earlier Mr Hipkins defended his government’s decision to continue funding gang programmes.

“Programmes like the $2.57 million Labour gave the Mongrel Mob to run a methamphetamine addiction treatment programme, despite recent data showing 41 per cent of respondents in Northland bought drugs through gang members.

“It is no wonder the Mongrel Mob is actively campaigning for Labour around the country.

“Just today we saw more evidence of the chaos and misery caused by these criminal organisations, as footage emerged of a horrific attack by members of the Rebels gang in Coromandel Town last week. The brazen daytime thuggery shows gangs are prepared to terrorise towns without fear of consequence.

“The fact is gangs are driving crime in New Zealand and after six years, Labour is either out of ideas or simply isn’t willing or able to do anything about it.

“National will restore law and order and ensure offenders face consequences.  Our Backing Police, Tackling Gangs policy will ban gang patches and insignia in public, stop gang members gathering in public with dispersal notices, introduce Consorting Prohibition Notices to stop gang members associating, and issue Firearms Prohibition Orders to stop gang members getting guns.

“It’s exactly this policy that currently has the gangs on a hikoi to Parliament to protest just how tough life will be for them under a National government.

“This election, voters have a clear choice between a tough on crime National-led Government that will take urgent action to ensure our communities are safer or three more years of a Labour-led Coalition of Chaos cosying up to the gangs.”