Wednesday, September 28, 2011

NZ Criminal Procedures Bill passes second reading...

New Zealand Labour MPs Charles Chauvel, Annett...Image via Wikipedia





NZ Criminal Procedures Bill passes second reading

Just because you may be famous will be no guarantee of getting name suppression if law changes before Parliament are passed.


Just because you may be famous will be no guarantee of getting name suppression if law changes before Parliament are passed.

Rules around suppression are being tightened in the Criminal Procedures Bill which has passed its second reading in Parliament by 110 votes to 11.

Justice Minister Simon Power says the Bill contains measures that will help address name suppression concerns around so-called celebrities.

"By providing that there is no presumption of extreme hardship solely on the ground that the defendant is well known or famous or think they are."

Labour MP Charles Chauvel is endorsing the Government's decision to loosen its original restrictions around access to jury trials, and also its change of heart on making inroads into a defendant's right to silence.

He says it's an ancient principle of our justice system that the prosecution's job is to prove an offence.

"The State has enormous resources which it can deploy in the detection and punishment of alleged offences, and when it does so there has to be some balancing."

Charles Chauvel says the right to silence is one of the most important of those.

The legislation will have its third and final reading after the election.
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