Opposition sides with Police Commissioner for judges to impose harsher penalties
Jovan Johnson, Gleaner Writer
The Opposition Jamaica Labour Party (JLP) is declaring that certain actions from the judiciary and the Government have not been fully supportive of the police in their efforts to reduce and control crime.
The remarks from the Opposition Spokesperson on National Security and Justice, Delroy Chuck, come on the heels of renewed calls from the Commissioner of Police for stiffer penalties for persons convicted for serious crimes.
Chuck agrees that there have been several instances in which judges have handed down light sentences to persons when harsher penalties seemed more appropriate.
Noting that he is not criticising the judiciary, the Opposition Spokesman says the imposition of heavy sentences is important to signal to criminals that the society denounces their actions.
He says Chief Justice Zaila McCalla will have to give consideration to the observations and make the appropriate response.
Chuck says the Government’s delay in bringing several pieces of legislation to Parliament has affected the work of the police.
He singles out the DNA and the Road Traffic legislations which are yet to be brought to Parliament.
Chuck has urged the Police Commissioner, Owen Ellington, to be cautious following statements that the force is looking at bringing civil action to bar criminals from certain communities.
He says such a move could result in breaches of constitutional rights.
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