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Thursday, May 17, 2007

Victims should tell criminals how they feel.

I am angered that the Court are attempting to censor what Kevin McNeil is wanting to say to the man who killed his mother. I’m all for better conditions inside prison’s and prisoner rights, but equally I believe that people who have been wronged must be allowed to be heard and their anger and fury must be heard by the person who has wronged, to have a situation as you do here where officials are stepping in to rob that of him is simply another insult to injury.

Let victims speak out: law expert
Nothing in the law should stop the son of murdered Tokoroa teacher Lois Dear from telling her killer exactly how he feels about him, a victims' expert says. Peter Sankoff, a senior lecturer in law at Auckland University and a researcher on the interaction between victims and the criminal justice system, says the Victims' Rights Act 2002 allows victims to talk about any effect of a crime on them - and this could include comments directed at the offender. But he says judges have interpreted the law conservatively and case law now dictates that victims not criticise the offender or the justice system, confining their comments to the crime's impact on them personally. "I think that's an inaccurate interpretation of what victim impact statements are designed to do," Mr Sankoff said. "If a victim feels let down by the system, they should be able to say so, and I can't see any good reason why they shouldn't. That to me is part of the harm they've suffered." His comments follow a report in the Herald yesterday about Kevin McNeil, the son of murdered Tokoroa teacher Lois Dear, who was asked to tone down a victim impact statement he plans to read to his mother's killer, Whetu Te Hiko, at Te Hiko's sentencing tomorrow. Police told Mr McNeil that critical comments he directed at Te Hiko and the justice system would not be accepted by the judge or prosecution. Mr McNeil has vowed to read the statement and said he would give it to media if prevented from doing so. "It's 30 hours of work and tears that have fallen on the paper," he said. Victim impact statements were introduced under the Victims of Offences Act 1987, marking a change in the victim's role - or lack thereof - in the criminal justice system.


At 17/5/07 8:26 pm, Anonymous Christian Prudence said...

Name suppression and all round secrecy with faces blurred out on T.V and all that judicial high-brow Bullshit has to go!

At 18/5/07 11:42 am, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Its easy to go on about prisoners rights, and all that, but when you or someone close to you becomes a victim, then you find yourself demanding the death penalty and bread and water and so on. Among other things.

I know that I probably would.

This gentleman has every right to be upset, and say how he feels, and he shouldnt have to hold back.

Its human nature really.

At 18/5/07 3:40 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Flat-screen T.V's and under-floor heating plus (Korean) BBQ cook your own and KFC if your lucky mate, or is life really a breeze in an Orange Jump-Suit on remand at the watch-tower communal police cell's with no fresh air and no place to exercise!

At 18/5/07 5:04 pm, Blogger lotech said...

Its interesting that Auckland Regional Council (ARC) recently took a Tree Triming (and illegal felling) company to court for its illegal actions to some protected trees. Besides the $5000 fine they had to go through restorative justice proceedings which includes Planting new trees (duh) but also talking to schools about the reasons why we need the color green in our otherwise grey urban world.....
So the council gets it for simple negligence (and rightly so) but for the act of murder - possibly the worst of all crimes - we just lock em up.

I imaging Kevin will/should be involved in some processes later in detention and later rehabilitation of his mothers murderer.

At 19/5/07 11:27 am, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Speaking of Auckland University, does anyone remember the good old days when the odd lecturer was from Oxford or Harvard like Martin Wilkinson the philosopher and Scott Optican on the "harassment network".Was Steve Hoadley really working for the C.I.A like Paul Buchanan does now and was Bill Hodge really the go-to guy if you had a run in with the law.Now every second person in the local media, and remember they now publish who said what and where; is like this guy from Otago telling us dumb colonials who cannot think for ourselves all about Bush,Blair and Howard like we give a damn anymore over here mate.Quotas for foreign students and staff to get them both back under 50% again and restore some balance and order to an over-burdened KIWI Tertiary education system!

At 19/5/07 1:59 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

This "scum-bag" will still be only 40 or there-abouts when he gets released from jail, a bit like Tim Selwyn and his "indefinite detention"; so long as Clark keeps out John Key with the "deep as a bird-bath" comment in the Budget on T.V.Maybe Tim Selwyn should start praying for a change of Government next year if that is the only way he will eventually see his Freedom again mate.What do you reckon Bomber?

At 20/5/07 7:30 pm, Anonymous Prudey said...

We need much more "outing" of crims by the victims family like spreading their mug all over the news and making them feel ashamed of the pain they have caused to total strangers they don't give a damn about usually.Good on the judge for letting the cameras in to film the statement they read out and we need much less secrecy please and stop treating "them" with kid gloves after all the son of the murdered teacher was wearing a Maori pendant/pounamu and therefore he held no malice towards the man who killed his mum.

At 26/5/07 12:28 pm, Anonymous curious said...

Could the anonymous poster on 19-5 at 11:27AM please explain how his/her post is relevant to the topic and what evidence s/he has that either Hoadley or Buchanan were/are CIA agents? Otherwise you leave the impression that you are a bit of a nutter.


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