No jail time for serious offences

The Government’s restorative justice programme Te Pae Oranga is taking preventing imprisonment to a new level with more serious offences sent to the Iwi Community Panel, National’s Police spokesperson Simeon Brown says.

“I don’t think many New Zealanders would consider the attempt to abduct children out of the country a low-level offence. Certainly no parent would.

“But that’s the case under this Government, with someone committing that offence now being sent through Te Pae Oranga.”

Mr Brown says that while alternative resolution is appropriate in some cases, it should only be for minor offences. But under the Labour Government, the focus has changed.

“Now, if you stab a police officer or sell military-style automatic weapons or sell meth to kids, your punishment will be a hui.

“These are serious crimes, very serious in some cases, and they deserve appropriate consequences.

“Police officers are telling us they feel powerless to do their job properly and hold offenders to account for their actions. This is leading to the public losing confidence in them.

“The Government is so focused on reducing the prison population that it’s letting criminals off the hook.

“Labour’s soft on crime attitude is putting the safety of our communities at risk and it’s preventing the police from doing their job.”

You can read a list of the more serious offences now covered under Te Pae Oranga here.