More lies from Jacinda Ardern and Andrew Little minimises indecent assault

Both Andrew Little and Jacinda Ardern are spinning like tops on justifying their smaller prison at Waikeria. They’ve made claims that prisons are full of low level offenders: Quote:

“The American style approach of building mega-style prisons and filling them with low-level criminals is not working. End quote.

Andrew Little said the same thing in parliament yesterday: Quote:

MARK MITCHELL (National—Rodney) to the Minister of Justice: Does he stand by all of his Government’s justice policies and decisions?

ANDREW LITTLE (Minister of Justice): Yes.

Mark Mitchell: Does the Minister still agree with the Prime Minister’s comments that we’re filling our prisons with low-level criminals?    

ANDREW LITTLE: Yes.

Mark Mitchell: How many people are in prison for possession of cannabis?

ANDREW LITTLE: I don’t have that particular figure on me. What I can say is that we know that more than 50 percent of those who enter the prison system in any one year are convicted of crimes that do not entail violence or are not otherwise serious.

Mark Mitchell: What is an example of a non-violent assault?

ANDREW LITTLE: The member may well be aware that earlier this year, a High Court judge in Auckland was dealing with an offender charged with indecent assault—in fact, convicted of indecent assault. The actions comprising that offence were pinching the bottom of a prison officer, and the judge was having to face the fact that the prisoner, because of the operation of other law, was facing a mandatory maximum sentence of seven years. The judge said he was not going to sentence anybody to seven years for pinching somebody else’s bottom.

Mark Mitchell: Could the Minister just clarify for me that he just stood in the House and told us that an indecent assault is an example of a non-violent assault? End quote.

Judith Collins points out in a tweet that Andrew Little misrepresented the situation of that caseQuote:

On checking the Judge’s sentencing notes, it was described as ‘grabbing’ the Correction Officer’s bottom, & the victim requiring stress leave. I can imagine how stressed she would be going back into her work with that offender. Little trivialises women workers. End quote.

He continued to mislead the house with his answers: Quote:

Mark Mitchell: How many people, under your definition of non-violent assaults—

Mr SPEAKER: Order! Order!

Mark Mitchell: —sorry, the Minister’s definition of non-violent assaults—are currently in prison?

ANDREW LITTLE: Again, I don’t have that detailed figure, but I repeat: what we do know is that 50 percent of offenders entering the prison system in any one year are convicted of offences that do not entail violence and are not otherwise serious offences. That member will know that we have a Sentencing Act and a sentencing regime that distinguishes between different categories of offence. There is more serious offending and there is less serious offending. End quote.

That simply isn’t true at all. Simon Bridges pointed out the facts: Quote:

“The Government’s own figures show that 98 per cent of prisoners are locked up for Category 3 and Category 4 crimes. These are offences punishable by two years in prison or more. These include murder, manslaughter, rape, aggravated assault and sexual violence.

“These are not low level offences and the Prime Minister is wrong to say otherwise.

“It is also worth noting that people on remand or serving sentences in New Zealand prisons have an average of 46 convictions on their criminal record.

“The fact is only our most serious and repeat offenders are locked up and they must continue to be, and the only way that will happen is if the new prison is built. End quote.

David Farrar summarised the prison statistics for offences: Quote:

The prison population comprises the following by offence category

  1. Category 1 (infringements and fines) – zero
  2. Category 2 (term of imprisonment of less than two years) – 224 (2.1%)
  3. Category 3 (term of imprisonment of more than two years) – 9,698 (91.0%)
  4. Category 4 – (murder, manslaughter, treason, piracy, slavery, public corruption) 738 (6.9%) End quote.

It is pretty obvious that the prime minister, who claims that she does not lie, and Andrew Little are minimising the sorts of crimes that people are in prison for. For a justice minister to think that an indecent assault, one which caused the Correction staff member to take stress leave was nothing more than a pinch on the bottom shows just how out of touch he is with society, and reinforces Labour men have a problem with women. That a Labour man thinks it is perfectly OK for indecent assaults against women to be minimised says a great deal.


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As much at home writing editorials as being the subject of them, Cam has won awards, including the Canon Media Award for his work on the Len Brown/Bevan Chuang story. When he’s not creating the news, he tends to be in it, with protagonists using the courts, media and social media to deliver financial as well as death threats.

They say that news is something that someone, somewhere, wants kept quiet. Cam Slater doesn’t do quiet and, as a result, he is a polarising, controversial but highly effective journalist who takes no prisoners.

He is fearless in his pursuit of a story.

Love him or loathe him, you can’t ignore him.

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