Fri | Nov 17, 2017

Gov't looking at more incentives for criminals who plead guilty

Published:Friday | July 14, 2017 | 9:46 AMJerome Reynolds
Chuck ... amendments to the law will allow persons who have shown remorse for their crimes to be eligible for early parole.

Justice Minister Delroy Chuck says the Government will be looking at amending the Parole Act and the expungement law to provide further incentives for criminals who plead guilty through the plea-bargaining process.

Chuck said the amendments will allow persons who have shown remorse for their crimes to be eligible for early parole.

He further said prisoners who have turned been reformed and who have a good relationship with their families should be allowed to serve a part of their sentences in the community, especially if the victims forgive them.

The Justice Minister also said he’s looking at having these persons becoming eligible to eventually have their criminal records expunged.

Chuck said it is hoped that the move will result in offenders being examples to their communities, as it will be incumbent on them to live a crime-free life in order to complete parole and be eligible to have their record expungement in 15 to 20 years.

He said integrating these incentives into the plea-bargaining process is critical to achieving the target of having at least 50 percent of accused persons submit guilty pleas, resulting in a significant reduction in the backlog of cases in the courts.