CRACKDOWN ON FOREIGN CRIMINALS WHO SNEAK BACK TO UK
FOREIGN criminals and child abusers face tougher sentences under plans in the Queen’s Speech today.
The prison terms for those who sneak back into the UK in breach of deportation orders would be lengthened from weeks to years.
In a further clampdown, killers and rapists would no longer be freed halfway through their sentences. They would instead serve at least two thirds of their time.
Another law would see murderers who refuse to reveal where they buried their victims spending longer behind bars.
The proposed legislation will extend to paedophiles who stay silent about their crimes. This follows anger over the release of depraved nursery worker Vanessa George after just a decade inside.
The Queen’s Speech also covers post-Brexit immigration, plastic pollution and building safety. On crime and punishment it includes:
■ New laws to crack down on the ‘epidemic’ of domestic violence;
■ Tougher community sentences to restore public confidence in the justice system;
■ Faster extradition for offenders wanted abroad, without the need
for the authorities to apply for a warrant;
■ Greater protection for police officers involved in car chases.
Home Secretary Priti Patel said: ‘ Deterring foreign criminals from re- entering the country and putting those that do behind bars for longer will make our country safer.’
Around 400 criminals are estimated to breach deportation orders each year. Those who are caught face a maximum of six months in jail but typically serve just ten weeks.
Ministers have decided the tougher sentences should stretch to years, but have not yet agreed a tariff. They say the legislation will also disrupt the activities of networks that facilitate the illegal return of offenders.
In August the Daily Mail revealed that an Albanian double murderer was twice allowed to sneak into Britain and live here for 13 years.
Gentian Doda, a member of a notorious crime syndicate, was granted a British passport under a false name while on the run for the killings, which included gunning down an innocent
‘Compound the grief of families’
young father with a Kalashnikov.
A separate measure in the Queen’s Speech aims to ensure paedophiles who fail to reveal the identity of their victims will stay in prison for longer.
The proposal to penalise criminals who stay silent comes under ‘Helen’s Law’ after Helen McCourt, a 22-yearold insurance clerk murdered in 1988 by pub landlord Ian Simms.
He has always refused to reveal the location of her body.
Justice Secretary Robert Buckland wants to extend this legislation to cover sexual abusers after public outrage over the case of George, 49.
Despite refusing to say which toddlers she had molested in the nursery where she worked in Plymouth she was released after just ten years in jail.
Domestic violence will also be tackled under the legislative proposals.
More than 732,000 such offences were recorded by police in the year to March – a 22 per cent annual increase.
A Domestic Abuse Bill was brought to Parliament in July by Theresa May but it was automatically dropped when Parliament was suspended and ministers have now kept a promise to reintroduce it.
Despite the pomp and pageantry around the Queen’s Speech, it is likely to be voted down in the coming days as Boris Johnson is more than 40 votes short of a House of Commons majority.
Instead, the proposals will form the backbone of the Conservatives’ manifesto for an election expected in weeks.
Labour’s Shadow Home Secretary Diane Abbott said: ‘It is hypocritical for the Tories to set out these plans when they were the ones who imposed cuts and let crime soar in the first place. Everything was cut, from schools, to the NHS, to the police, to mental health services. They all had terrible consequences.
‘This Queen’s Speech is farcical. It is just an uncosted wish list which the Government has no intention and no means to deliver, and nothing more than a pre-election party political broadcast.
‘We always argued that cuts have consequences.’