Libs flag hard line on do­ing time

Mercury (Hobart) - - NEWSFRONT - HE­LEN KEMPTON

TOUGHENING sen­tenc­ing op­tions for se­ri­ous sex­ual, vi­o­lent and drug crimes will top the State Gov­ern­ment’s Par­lia­men­tary agenda this week.

The Gov­ern­ment will in­tro­duce its Bills to phase out sus­pended sen­tences for se­ri­ous crimes to­mor­row.

The Gov­ern­ment said it re­garded a sus­pended sen­tence as a non-sen­tence and it was time those who com­mit­ted se­ri­ous crimes were sent to prison, de­tained at home or sent to work in the com­mu­nity.

“That is why we took a pol­icy to the elec­tion to phase them out and re­place them with al­ter­na­tives such as im­pris­on­ment, home de­ten­tion, and com­mu­nity cor­rec­tion or­ders,” Leader of Gov­ern­ment Busi­ness Michael Fer­gu­son said.

“Our po­si­tion is sim­ple: if you do the crime, you do the time. We will also use this week to de­bate a mo­tion call­ing on La­bor to sup­port our Bill pro­vid­ing for manda­tory jail for pae­dophiles.

“The blow­torch will be on La­bor as to how they vote on these mat­ters, and to jus­tify why they think that se­ri­ous and vi­o­lent crim­i­nals should be free to roam the streets.”

Deputy La­bor Leader Michelle O’Byrne said yes­ter­day her party took of­fence at the sug­ges­tion any­one would want to see pae­dophiles get away with­out ap­pro­pri­ate jus­tice.

Ms O’Byrne said there was al­ready a cri­sis in Tas­ma­nia’s prison sys­tem and manda­tory sen­tenc­ing had never been proven to be a de­ter­rent.

“We will ask the Law Re­form Com­mis­sion to look at what can be done. There is a role for pre­sump­tive non-pa­role sen­tenc­ing but we have to know if any new sen­tenc­ing mea­sures will work,” she said.

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