Sort it out, Amy – and give judges back the power to decide when restorative justice should kick in

January 29, 2015

Alf would have counselled Restorative Justice Aotearoa to lie low and stay stum about changes to the Sentencing Act, which came into effect on Monday 6 December.

As a namby-pamby bunch on law-and-order matters, they were unlikely to be too fussed about the backlog of cases building up in the courts. And of justice delays being justice denied.

They put their emphasis on the changes to the Sentencing Act being intended to make restorative justice services more accessible in the District Court.

This – of course – means work and more money for their members.

The changes have stripped judges of their discretion to decide if restorative justice process is appropriate.

Moreover South Island lawyers are complaining that Christchurch’s restorative justice programme is so under-resourced that every week it falls another six weeks behind.

Amy Adams is going to check it out. 


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Come on Amy – let’s scrap these restorative justice rules instead of waiting to see if they work

January 16, 2015

No, not all judges get it right – certainly not nearly as often as Alf would like.

But when it comes to who should decide when a cup of tea and a cosy chat is an appropriate way of sorting things out between victim and offender, we politicians seem to have seriously stuffed things up in June last year when we tinkered with the Sentencing Act.

We gave the job of deciding restorative justice is the way to go in a case to a touchy feely bunch of tossers who happen to be the providers of the restorative justice process that will be followed whenever someone pleads guilty.

It’s a bit like legislatively deciding that ice-cream vendors should decide when people should be required to eat ice-cream, then sending the bill to the taxpayers.

What a joke.

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The importance of being needed – it can get you off a drink-driving rap without conviction

June 12, 2010

As a bloke who has been known to sink a pint or two on occasions, and maybe chase the pint or two down with a few nips of best Scotch, Alf is greatly heartened by a morsel of news from the courts.

He finds a precedent has been set for important people like him to drive home from the Eketahuna Club with a bit much booze on board, to be picked up by the cops, to be hauled before the courts, and then to be sent home without a stain on his character, although maybe there would be a stain or two on his liver.

Now let it be said that Alf would never drive home from the Eketahuna Club with a bit much booze on board, or from anywhere else, for the very good reason that it is thoroughly illegal as well as being highly dangerous to other citizens.

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