The Bail Amendment Bill

November 10th, 2012 at 1:28 pm by David Farrar

The Bail Amendment Bill has just been reported back from select committee. I am a supporter of it, and think it will save lives. Akshay Chand should never have been able to get , and sadly he killed Christie Marceau.

With bail it is a balancing act. If everyone accused of a crime was refused bail, then many innocent people would be spending lengthy spells in jail. But likewise if all those arrested automatically got bail, then the number of people killed, raped and beaten by those on bail would be significant. Once you know you are facing a trial and eventual jail on some charges, some are motivated to offend even more as it may not lead to an increased sentence.

In the last five years 46 people on bail were found guilty of murder or homicide.

Now what is the main provision of the bill:

  • remove the strong presumption in favour of bail for defendants aged 17 to 19, if they had previously been sentenced to imprisonment.

This is well overdue. Half of young defendants who had served a previous prison sentence (think what you must have done to have already had a prison sentence by this age) go on to offend while on bail. Removing the strong presumption to bail means they can be judged on the merits on the risk.

But read the minority reports from Labour and Greens.

I can’t even work out what Labour’s position is on this key provision. They repeat what the provision does, but do not state their view on it. As it is a minority report, I think they are against it – but seriously who could tell? I guess they are trying to have it both ways.

The Greens are more clear cut. They support keeping the current law which sees 18 and 19 year olds released on bail despite extensive previous offending and a 50% reoffending rate while on bail.

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86 Responses to “The Bail Amendment Bill”

  1. Lee C (4,516 comments) says:

    I think this is a good idea but only if, rather than languishing in jail these young people are given access to eduction and skills whihc may assist them to get back on the straight and narrow. For some of these guys and gals it will be first time they have ever been exposed to a meaningful education and training.

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  2. bringbackdemocracy (393 comments) says:

    A clean out of useless Judges would also achieve an improvement.
    Any offense committed while on bail should be treated cumulatively at sentencing.

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  3. F E Smith (3,302 comments) says:

    (think what you must have done to have already had a prison sentence by this age)

    Well, as an example, they might not have done their community work for the the theft charge that they pleaded guilty to last year.

    A clean out of useless Judges would also achieve an improvement.

    And that is populist nonsense.

     

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  4. Johnboy (14,973 comments) says:

    And here was me hoping that you had shot yourself by now Lord Birkenhead! :)

    [DPF: 50 demerits]

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  5. David Garrett (6,400 comments) says:

    Johnboy: Very much out of order.

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  6. Chuck Bird (4,682 comments) says:

    ” A clean out of useless Judges would also achieve an improvement.

    And that is populist nonsense.”

    From my experience in Civil Court I can support what bringbackdemocracy says there are some arrogant, unfair and incompetent judges and Court Staff particularly at the High Court. I will be complaining to the Judicial Conduct Commission. People should be able to represent themselves in Court and be treated with respect and fairness. I was not.

    I could say more but will wait. FES I would be happy to tell you more but not on this forum. chuckbirdnz@gmail.com
    I seem to have lost your email address.

    I told my story on Justice Hottub but my comment has been waiting moderation for a few days.

    http://www.justicehottub.fh.net.nz/the-nz-legal-system-fe-smith/

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  7. F E Smith (3,302 comments) says:

    Johnboy (9,374) Says:
    November 10th, 2012 at 3:37 pm

    And here was me hoping that you had shot yourself by now Lord Birkenhead!

    You know, Johnboy, although I have you on RIP, I can see what you wrote if I am using a different browser than Firefox.

    Your comment is, in my opinion, highly offensive, especially in light of Greg’s recent death.  It is both an expression of disappointment that a fellow commenter on KB had not committed suicide, while also playing in an appalling manner on the circumstances of Greg’s recent death.  I don’t care what you meant by the smiley face emoticon, the comment is execrable in its entirety.

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  8. Johnboy (14,973 comments) says:

    Don’t like lawyer’s sorry David, other than possibly yourself, never having met you in person.

    Read what you said re: the other matter.

    Never actually met one yet that I didn’t regard as a c**t.

    Recent deaths no exclusion. :)

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  9. F E Smith (3,302 comments) says:

     Chuck,

    People should be able to represent themselves in Court and be treated with respect and fairness. I was not.

    If you were treated badly by a judicial officer, or by court staff, then I do encourage you to complain.  Judges are obligated to assist litigants-in-person in accordance with the principles of justice.  

    Now imagine if you had been facing a criminal charge, rather than being in civil jurisdiction, and you might understand why we defence lawyers oppose restrictions on grants of lega aid so much.

    My comment above was, however, in relation to bail, although I do appreciate your point.

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  10. Graeme Edgeler (3,267 comments) says:

    In the last five years 46 people on bail were found guilty of murder or homicide.

    How many of those would this law change have affected?

    If someone kills while bailed on some fine only offence like offensive behaviour, or some minor drug possession charge for which you would never go to prison, this law change isn’t going to make much of a difference, is it?

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  11. Johnboy (14,973 comments) says:

    Hell it is so funny FES that:

    a: You Have pretended that you have ripped me for so long and as we all know, you never did, as you couldn’t resist. :)

    b: You are such a sad predictable sort of tosser. Much as I suspected when I first read your pompous comments on KB.

    c: Nice to see we have it all out out the open now. Lets converse. I love talking to lawyers. But only if they are honest! :)

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  12. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    I hope this is not a step towards denying bail on the basis of how much emotion the charges incite, rather than the actual threat to the public the accused presents.

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  13. Johnboy (14,973 comments) says:

    Sorry I have offended you DPF. I could protest the demerits, not that it will do any good, but at least it sucked a pretender out of the undergrowth! :)

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  14. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    why we defence lawyers oppose restrictions on grants of lega aid so much.

    I think legal aid should be unlimited, just as it is for the prosecution. The accused has the massive resources of the state lined up against them. No expense is spared in trying to secure a conviction.

    The defendant (assumed innocent) has only his lawyer.

    Johnboy may want to consider that. He may also want to consider that without lawyers the system can not work properly. Chuck found that out the hard way I suspect. He probably wanted “justice” and got “law”.

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  15. Johnboy (14,973 comments) says:

    Anyway David. How can you get 50 for asking Lord Birkenhead if he has shot himself yet???

    20 maybe. I would expect 50 if I had squeezed the trigger myself! :)

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  16. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    I got 50 for objecting to RRM’s defence of mass murdering socialist regimes :)

    That was a bit rough Johnboy and it is very hard to offend me.

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  17. Johnboy (14,973 comments) says:

    It wouldn’t be so bad if you weren’t dealing with liars and folk with their own agenda Kea. :)

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  18. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    So whats the issue with lawyers?

    Sounds like a bit more than the usual ribbing lawyers get…

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  19. Chuck Bird (4,682 comments) says:

    FES, I spent several thousand dollars on for legal advice fighting a rogue former lawyer. He manged to get a caveat off a property I loaned him money on. I had no option but to go to the High Court to get the second caveat on. The guy now could afford a barrister on the strength having an unconditional sale on the property having got rid of the caveat. I file an application for a second caveat and on 18 Sept go to court for a hearing date.

    On my application I make it clear there is some urgency. I have never been in a High Court even as an observer. it is quite intimating particularly where people representing themselves are not on a level playing field. I should have been invited to a table opposite the barrister John Barratt-Boyes not behind him at the back of the court.

    Barratt-Boyes gets a choice of date 1 Oct or 24 Oct. I get no say and he natural choosing 24 Oct. The judge the says when the affidavits have to be in and is ready to dismiss us. I then have no option but to get up and say, “With respect Your Honour, I have gone to a lot expense and trouble to get this far. The property has been sold and settlement date is 16 Nov. If I walk out of today I expect the settlement date will likely be brought forward and I will never see my money.”

    I was standing when I spoke and when the judge replied, “The court is to be notified if settlement is brought bought forward.”

    I then sat down and Barrett-Boyes stood up. I believe he was obstructing my view of the judge. I could not hear him well but I thought he did not object. The judge may have said something but I doubt it.

    I next appear in front of a different judge, Justice Katz on 24 Oct. She says, I do not know what I can do for you the property was sold on 16 Oct. I could not believe it. I told her what Justice Christiansen said and Barrett-Boyes had a different story. I am sure Justice Katz believed me but could do nothing.

    I was sure what the judge said in response to me. I cannot say with 100% certainty Barrett-Boyes did not convince him to change his mind but I certainly was was not made aware of it.

    Sure the principles of justice should be that I am on an equal footing with the other party’s lawyer so I can hear what is going on. I have some hearing lose as does 15% of the population. I have no problem hearing someone I am looking at. Barrett-Boyes had his back to me and I beleive he block my view fo the judge.

    When I went to all that trouble surely a judge should be obliged to make every reasonable effort to make sure both parties hear the arguments and minute/directions. I also think they should be in writing. Am i being unreasonable?

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  20. David Garrett (6,400 comments) says:

    Sorry Johnboy…I usually find your comments amusing (when you intend to be) and almost always agree with at least part of what you say. Not today.

    I have just returned from what is undoubtedly the saddest funeral I have ever attended, for a bloody good guy, whatever you or anyone else thinks of our profession. You perhaps might think it a little significant that the man sitting next to me was Gil Elliot, Sophie’s father. There were several other victims in attendance whose loved ones had been murdered.

    If I was running the show you’d have got a months holiday, not 50 demerits. That’s my last comment on this matter.

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  21. Minnie1972 (42 comments) says:

    Great posts FE Smith. I agree, particularly with the populist nonsense about the judiciary.

    Lee C at 3.19pm, there is no way anyone sitting in custody on remand is going to get access to programmes etc. Currently unless you get sentenced to two years or more you’re lucky to qualify for any meaningful programmes. Nice idea though.

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  22. Johnboy (14,973 comments) says:

    Well David. Much as I like your style and realise that the deceased was a a mate I just don’t like bloody lawyers for good reason and the fact that one of them has just carked does not raise me to tears.

    If it did I would be a bloody hypocrite and I may be many things but not one of them. :)

    Sorry I can’t share your grief but hope we can agree on other topics on another occasion!

    Nice to see that Lord Birkenhead is confirmed as a bloody hypocrite though! :)

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  23. Chuck Bird (4,682 comments) says:

    I think most reasonable people would agree that there are some scumbag lawyers. However, I have had some free help from lawyers who have seen what seen what I am up against from one of their former colleagues. I know a lot of other lawyers have also done a a lot pro bono for other people including the late Greg King.

    Peter Burns got a life ban on KB for something he said on another blog. One thing I could say in Peter’s favour he was using his own name. Many people on this blog it seems knew Greg King and thought highly of him. Maybe Johnboy would like to at least follow Peter Burn’s example and use his real name when he posts such a disgusting remark. If he is not man enough to do that perhaps he is man enough to apologise.

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  24. F E Smith (3,302 comments) says:

    Chuck,

    as you know, I am not a civil litigation lawyer, so when it comes to property litigation I am not in a strong position to comment other than to say that your story sounds pretty bad. I agree that it sounds like you were stiffed, and I know what it is like to have a judge tell me that what another judge did or said was no concern of theirs. If the other party in this is a lawyer, have you considered a complaint to the NZLS?

    On topic, I actually have little issue with this bill. I think that its supporters overstate its likely effect, but so long as the amendment only affects defendants who have previously been imprisoned, I don’t really care.

    How many of those would this law change have affected?

    If someone kills while bailed on some fine only offence like offensive behaviour, or some minor drug possession charge for which you would never go to prison, this law change isn’t going to make much of a difference, is it?

    As always, Graeme puts the matter far better than I ever could.  I just want to avoid having young people going to prison if at all possible. Of course, that does not mean at all costs, just if possible.

    EDIT: BTW, Cheers, Minnie.

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  25. Johnboy (14,973 comments) says:

    For Christs sake Chuck. King was just another fucking lawyer and a very well paid one from the public purse I might add.

    Much as he may have been a bloody good chap, that’s all he was.

    If you wish to start a church in his name, or build a statue in his likeness, give FESter or either of the Davids a call! :)

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  26. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    Why do you dislike lawyers so much Johnboy and are you sure all lawyers are “like that” ?

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  27. Minnie1972 (42 comments) says:

    Honestly, the hatred for “lawyers” is rather amusing. Do you hate prosecutors too Johnboy? Would you rather have NO justice system?

    Not meaning to hijack this thread, but seriously, why are lawyers so often vilified in this fashion? Aren’t there “scumbag” real estate agents, car salesmen, taxi drivers, farmers, retail assistants too?

    Or maybe it’s just because you imagine that lawyers earn tonnes of money and you’re jealous? Most lawyers will laugh themselves silly at this. ;)

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  28. Johnboy (14,973 comments) says:

    Dealt with them for many years in my business activities Kea and at a later date came here and read what they post.

    It’s enough for even a slow learner to realise that if something looks like shit and smells like shit it is most likely shit. :)

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  29. Johnboy (14,973 comments) says:

    No Minnie! :)

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  30. tristanb (1,133 comments) says:

    But likewise if all those arrested automatically got bail, then the number of people killed, raped and beaten by those on bail would be significant.

    It already is significant.

    I hate that the Greens reduce the lives of those who have been killed, raped, and assaulted to mere numbers. How they act as if the violence suffered by these people is just an inevitable consequence of the justice system. This shouldn’t be happening at all.

    If the police have brought someone in on a violent charge, there’s a good chance they’ll be violent. They should not be released on bail. If the police lied about this, then those police need to face consequences. But we can’t go letting out every violent offender because they ‘might’ be innocent.

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  31. Chuck Bird (4,682 comments) says:

    FES, there is definitely a complaint going in to the NZLS which I have been in touch with and against this former lawyer and John Barratt-Boyes who does not seem to realise a lawyers first duty is as an officer of the court that comes in front of duty to the client.

    I have already written to the Minster of Courts in regard the HC staff in particularly the manager. I will also be complaining the Judicial Conduct Commission.

    Just like lawyers there are good judges and bad judges. I do not think many lawyers will deny that their are a lot of lawyers who hate people representing themselves. Unfortunately, some judges carry this bias on to the bench. I have any experience in court for about 25 years where I represented myself in the Family Court. On both occasions I was treated fairly particularly by Dame Siliva Cartwright.

    The unfair way I have been treated in the Civil Court has come as a real shock to. I expected better.

    It would be nice if the judge said to me you are looking rather smart today Mr Bird. After all that is much what the judge said to the toerag that raped the 5 year old girl.

    There is something wrong with the system that allows a former lawyer to use threats of running up someones legal to force them to stop pursuing a debt.

    Hopefully I get another woman judge I have seemed to get much better treatment from them.

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  32. Johnboy (14,973 comments) says:

    Would you consider yourself a faulty unit then Chuck?

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  33. bringbackdemocracy (393 comments) says:

    Legal aid should be treated the same as a student loan and paid back in the same way if the recipient is found guilty.
    The debt to the taxpayer could then be waived if found not guilty. This would provide a financial incentive for the guilty to speed up the process while the meter is running instead of lining lawyers pockets with taxpayer money.

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  34. elscorcho (152 comments) says:

    My perspective:

    1. We need tougher sentences in NZ, especially for repeat offenders who have been convicted on multiple successive occasions. A third strike for burglary should be life, because we are punishing not the specific crime, but rather the unwillingness to obey the law (which separates us from animals)

    2. When you have been ARRESTED and CHARGED you are INNOCENT. Bail should be a right until you are convicted. Convict them, throw away the key, hang them, shoot them, fine. They’ve been convicted. But no man/woman should be denied bail unless the grounds are extraordinary, because they haven’t been found guilty yet.

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  35. Johnboy (14,973 comments) says:

    Isn’t our whole lawyer designed system designed to line lawyers pockets with taxpayers money? :)

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  36. elscorcho (152 comments) says:

    Tristanb
    “But we can’t go letting out every violent offender because they ‘might’ be innocent.”
    Until the moment they are found guilty, they are innocent. I know that’s probably a little metaphysical for you but it’s the way it is.

    Once they’re found guilty, I have no problem with the death penalty. But until then, they exist in a non-guilty state (I’m sure there’s a Schrodinger or tree falling in a forest observation analogy here)

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  37. Johnboy (14,973 comments) says:

    Not that I would want to mention $491,558 or whatever unless it upset right thinking folk on KB!! :)

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  38. Minnie1972 (42 comments) says:

    Bail should be a right until you are convicted? Are you serious? How about the people who end up hurt/maimed/dead while some of these offenders are out on bail and continuing to offend? I don’t think you’re going to find many people would ever agree with your second point, for that reason.

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  39. elscorcho (152 comments) says:

    And why do we hate lawyers?

    Because lawyers are the modern equivalent of the medieval priest pre-Luther
    They wrap their law in complex language and concepts that are beyond the understanding of the common man, deliberately making legal help (a) rare and thus (b) expensive

    If we simplified the law and made it “plain English”, the world would be a better place, and every man could be his own attorney

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  40. Chuck Bird (4,682 comments) says:

    “If you wish to start a church in his name, or build a statue in his likeness”

    I did not know Greg King but there are certain standards decency most people follow. If someone one died of AIDS I would might make some remark privately but I would not be commenting “I told you so” on this on another blog even under a pseudonym which I never use.

    You are WRONG. No one supports you.

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  41. Johnboy (14,973 comments) says:

    All the lawyers seem to have gone away on this one! :)

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  42. Minnie1972 (42 comments) says:

    I doubt, with all due respect, that “plain English” has much to do with John Boy’s rabid hatred for the profession.

    Every man CAN be his own attorney if he wants, but he will have a fool for a client, in my opinion, even if he is a trained lawyer.

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  43. elscorcho (152 comments) says:

    “Bail should be a right until you are convicted? Are you serious? How about the people who end up hurt/maimed/dead while some of these offenders are out on bail and continuing to offend? I don’t think you’re going to find many people would ever agree with your second point, for that reason.”

    Until a person is convicted, he/she is as innocent as you or I. We already have rules in place for when prior behaviour indicates a veryyyy high probability of offending on bail. We don’t need to enhance them anymore.

    Cops could come in right now, arrest me for a murder I didn’t do, and what, I don’t get bail because it’s a serious accusation?

    Realise how easily this could be manipulated by police. Add a serious violent offence to a broader range of charges to get the “no bail” bit, then drop the charge later when it doesn’t matter. Basically you’re getting extrajudicial imprisonment for free.

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  44. Johnboy (14,973 comments) says:

    Thank you Chuck for this threads most coherent comment! :)

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  45. Minnie1972 (42 comments) says:

    You’re so right Chuck.

    No, Johnboy, all the lawyers haven’t gone away.

    Loving the grinning idiot face on every post, BTW!

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  46. Graeme Edgeler (3,267 comments) says:

    If the police have brought someone in on a violent charge, there’s a good chance they’ll be violent. They should not be released on bail.

    And what if police told the truth: that someone smacked their son or daughter? It’s criminal now, and a crime of domestic violence. It’s unlikely you’ll serve prison time if convicted, but you think they should spend nine months in prison waiting for their trial?

    If someone is denied bail, and is then not convicted, should they get compensated for the time they spent inside? If it meant they lost their family’s home, because they couldn’t keep up mortgage payments, because they also lost their job, should we get them a new home, and new job?

    Serious questions. What do people think about

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  47. Chuck Bird (4,682 comments) says:

    “If we simplified the law and made it “plain English”, the world would be a better place, and every man could be his own attorney”

    I have a lawyer friend who totally supports that view.

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  48. Johnboy (14,973 comments) says:

    Not rabid Minnie. Just pure unadulterated hatred of scum. :)

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  49. Nostalgia-NZ (4,910 comments) says:

    More expensive and emotional Law. When a group set out to basically take over the Courts by ‘helping’ Judges you need the law makers to reject the whole thing roundly, not compromise in this way by changing the onus of proof. Stricter bail conditions if necessary, perhaps electronic monitoring in extreme cases. Cases in isolation should have effect on the 99.99% the public never get to hear about.

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  50. Minnie1972 (42 comments) says:

    elscorcho, you do realise that the scenario you paint is pretty much how it is right now. The cops COULD come in and arrest you and charge you will murder and oppose bail and you COULD be sitting in a cell on remand by this time tomorrow!

    Thankfully, we have defence lawyers, and a decent justice system, so that doesn’t tend to happen without good evidence collected to support the charge.

    As I said, your opinion is, thankfully, in the minority, I’m sure even amongst *gasp* defence lawyers!

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  51. Graeme Edgeler (3,267 comments) says:

    doh. won’t let me edit, I guess it makes enough sense, anyway :-)

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  52. Minnie1972 (42 comments) says:

    Chuck, I also agree with respect to “plain English” – many firms are committed to trying to achieve this in their dealings with their clients and with self represented parties.

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  53. Johnboy (14,973 comments) says:

    Should I lock my doors and call 0800 Minnie when the cops come? :)

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  54. Minnie1972 (42 comments) says:

    No Johnboy, you’d be barking up entirely the wrong tree.

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  55. Johnboy (14,973 comments) says:

    I think I might just let them in and put the kettle on! :)

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  56. Johnboy (14,973 comments) says:

    You and I Minnie.

    Both barking! :)

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  57. Lee C (4,516 comments) says:

    minnie interestingly, you can get literacy adn numeracy classes while on remand, i know corrections are obliged to provide training of some type for all were they to observe un statures, but sadly this does not always happen.

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  58. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    I don’t think you’re going to find many people would ever agree with your second point, for that reason.

    I agree that people should be granted bail, as they are innocent until convicted. I sincerely believe that authoritarian types who assume guilt by accusation are a much greater threat to the public, than someone who committed a random act. This is not North Korea.

    Chuck Bird,I would not have said what he did myself and consider it bad form. But I do support Johnboys right to speak his mind. Feeling offended is a description of your emotional state, not of another persons actions. Preventing people expressing themselves does not change their thinking. You are more likely to change someones mind by speaking with them openly. When it comes to choice between freedom of speech and people being offended, I choose freedom.

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  59. Minnie1972 (42 comments) says:

    To make the current law clear – look here
    http://www.legislation.govt.nz/act/public/2000/0038/latest/DLM68903.html

    Of course bail is usually granted, but in cases of serious violence or apprehended risk of violence to the community, bail will not be granted. In my opinion, neither should it.

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  60. Johnboy (14,973 comments) says:

    Oh God. Not another bloody lawyer! :)

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  61. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    I found this in the Bail Act :

    A defendant is bailable as of right who is charged with an offence for which the maximum punishment is less than 3 years’ imprisonment, unless the offence is one against section 194 of the Crimes Act 1961 (which relates to assault on a child, or by a male on a female) or against section 49 of the Domestic Violence Act 1995 (which relate to contravention of a protection order).

    Unsurprising but disgusting none the less. Why should a mans normal legal rights be removed because a woman accused them of something? This may be law but it is not justice and is further evidence of the institutionalised misandry we have in NZ. I am sick of seeing this sort of anti male crap in the law. Whats the bet they don’t “amend” that bit.

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  62. Johnboy (14,973 comments) says:

    One departs. Another arrives! :)

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  63. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    A woman appeared in Court. She had seriously assaulted her partner. The injuries to his arm required hospital treatment. She smashed up his car and the motel they were staying in. The judge stood it down for restorative justice. No conviction.

    20 minutes later with the SAME judge:

    A young man appeared. He had an argument about visiting his kids, with his recently separated partner. He banged his fist down on a dressing table (no damage), kicked a speaker (no damage) and pulled the fridge door open quickly, which damaged the handle. He did not touch her, no assault. No mention of previous history.

    The judge tore strips off the guy. “Very serious offending” he ranted. Told him if it happens again he is going to jail. He had to pay $14 reparation (for the fridge door repair) and got 200 hours Community Work !

    He could have done with Greg Kings help, that poor bugger.

    I lost a huge amount of respect for the judiciary and the legal system that day. It is not an isolated case. Women in Saudi Arabia have more equality, under law, than men in NZ.

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  64. Minnie1972 (42 comments) says:

    So where is the link to this story Kea? Or is it purely anecdotal?

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  65. Chuck Bird (4,682 comments) says:

    Kea, have you got the links?

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  66. Johnboy (14,973 comments) says:

    Never let one case cloud your judgement Kea and use it as a foundation to build a bloody monument on. :)

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  67. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    Its not a “story” Minnie1972, I was there. I have spent a fair amount of time in court, so don’t bother trying to bullshit me that it does not happen. It does, daily, in NZ courts.

    And no, I was not appearing on charges, so don’t bother trying to discredit me that way either ;)

    I may add that I generally respect that judge greatly, but not in that area. Even the legislation is bias against males. If your accused by a woman in this country, your fucked.

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  68. Minnie1972 (42 comments) says:

    Not trying to discredit you. Simply confirming that it’s an anecdote.

    Unless you are extremely well acquainted with both defendants, Kea, then you will have no idea of the full story, the full circumstances of both cases. The Summary may have been read, but the Criminal Conviction History certainly won’t have been. All I’m saying is that it is easy, and understandable to be in Court, see something like that, and feel that an injustice has been done, but there is more than meets the eye, often.

    However, I will agree with you that in SOME cases, there does seem to be a feeling that violence to women by men is somehow ten times worse than anything any woman could ever do to a man. I certainly don’t subscribe to that theory, and do have empathy for some men in some circumstances. Sadly, some women do seem to be able to evoke sympathy based largely on their gender, which is obviously incredibly wrong.

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  69. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    Young female offenders often treat their Court appearances as a joke. They mitigate their offending by talking drivel about their “feelings” at the time and the idiot Judiciary buy into it. That is what happened in that case Minnie, the woman was having “emotional problems”. Try that defence if your a bloke. Ha bloody ha.

    They also bring their meal tickets kids along for sentencing, so they can be dealt with sooner and to play the sympathy card.

    You seem to know a bit about the law, can you tell us why there is such a charge as Male Assaults Female ?

    I would have thought “Assault” was all that is required….

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  70. Minnie1972 (42 comments) says:

    I hear you Kea…

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  71. Kevin (1,122 comments) says:

    Kea it never ceases to amaze me the number of female judges who are lenient to men who have committed vicious violent crimes or killings. So it’s not quite as simple as you say. If you are a male “blameless babe” from an underclass suburb preferably with brown skin, with 50 plus arrests you can certainly expect leniency.

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  72. Johnboy (14,973 comments) says:

    You are talking to an idiot that thinks she is a master of jurisprudence Kea.

    I suggest you save your breath! :)

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  73. cha (3,779 comments) says:

    The judge stood it down for restorative justice. No conviction.

    [...]

    I have spent a fair amount of time in court

    I say you’re a liar because if you’d attended a district court hearing you’d know that the first step in the restorative justice process is a guilty plea.

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  74. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    I never suggested it was “simple” and female Judges are sometimes softer on male offenders, I agree. Maybe they can see through some of the manipulation by female “victims”.

    Generally I have faith in the Judges, they are pretty smart and wise people. But in this area, I have no faith in them or the system.

    Don’t even get me started on the Family Court ! :(

    Thank god we did not have to go through that when my marriage ended. I feel for those that do.

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  75. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    Cha, yes I recall she pleaded guilty. I never said otherwise. She received no penalty, was my point.

    I don’t need to lie, there are plenty of real examples to draw upon.

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  76. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    Thanks for the tip Johnboy, but I am not relying on news paper reports, which never give an accurate, or complete, picture. I am sticking with things I have seen first hand, so attempts to deny it will only erode their credibility.

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  77. Minnie1972 (42 comments) says:

    Does Johnboy ever have any thing of interest to offer? Am I being charitable by assuming he’s having a bad day? Or is this thread an example of his contribution to debate here? Is there any way to ignore posts from certain people?

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  78. Johnboy (14,973 comments) says:

    I merely try to draw out the huge knowledge that folk such as yourself seem to possess Minnie. :)

    If you feel unable to respond, I will understand! :)

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  79. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    Is there any way to ignore posts

    Try not reading them. I know it’s a bit low-tech, but you will find it works.

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  80. Johnboy (14,973 comments) says:

    FESter said that! :)

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  81. Kevin (1,122 comments) says:

    You generally have faith in judges and our court system? After christie? After judge Judith potter only gave 3 years each to the road rage killer of the Indian grandfather and the kid who killed the hawkes bay teacher?

    Admittedly the family court is a total disgrace and is directly responsible for the enormous rise in youth crime. We’ve had first hand experience of their family group conferences after a feral kidnapped our son. The unbelievable thing is the judicial and political elite tour the world at taxpayer expense promoting the notion it is a world leading system.

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  82. F E Smith (3,302 comments) says:

    Minnie,

    If you want to filter out Johnboy completely (as I do) and use Firefox then you can download the Remove It Permanently add-on and use this: 

    //li[cite[contains(.,'Johnboy')]]

    to create a new filter.  There are better instructions here.

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  83. Chuck Bird (4,682 comments) says:

    Kea, I do not doubt you either but it would be nice if the case was reported. Do you know if it was? I really get annoyed and I get a lot of flack for it here that we bend over backwards for homosexuals but there a re many areas where normal heterosexual men are disadvantaged like the special charge assault on a woman for example and no political party cares. It is only in about the last ten years that women could be charged with having sex with an underage child and when they do get charged they often get name suppression unlike a man in the same circumstances.

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  84. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    Chuck Bird, It was not reported, as far as I know. There was nothing exceptional about it, which is really my point. I only drew upon it as an example. This sort of thing is common place. The woman had gone on a violent rampage, attacking both her husband and damaging private property. I was shocked at the Judges response to this. What really got my back up, was the was he treated a guy a few minutes latter, who damaged a fridge door handle in a very stressful situation !

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  85. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    I just recalled another two examples of the double standard shown in domestic violence situations:

    A mature and very respectable Asian lady appeared in Court. She was with her European husband. They looked very out of place and I wondered what on earth they were doing there. She got up in the dock and the summary of facts were read. The public gallery was wide eyed and slack jawed in amazement at what she had done. She had been trying to attack her husband with a knife. He looked like a gentle soul and called the cops. So what did she get for attempting to knife her partner….. NOTHING. She got no conviction, on the basis that the consequences (of a conviction) would outweigh the seriousness of the offending.

    An isolated case? No.

    Around the same time another lady (also Asian) appeared. She had threatened her partner with a knife. No penalty. I can not recall if it was a conviction or not.

    So maybe its one Judge? No.

    My ex girlfriend was Chinese, from another town entirely. She tried to knife her former Chinese partner. No conviction.

    Now imagine if we reversed the genders. Can you imagine a man getting off in an identical factual situation?

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  86. Chuck Bird (4,682 comments) says:

    Kea, it is not only that this is not restricted to one or two judges but also it is not restricted to NZ. According to the militant feminist sexism is not okay except if it advantages women.

    BTW – was the judge a man or a woman? I would bet it was a man?

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