Lawyers defending the in-defensible

Press Release – Sensible Sentencing Trust

The Sensible Sentencing Trust has slammed lawyers who have defended Judge Jocelyn Munro’s comments in relation to the 16 year old youth who bashed and raped a 5-year old girl in Turangi.For immediate release:

Lawyers defending the in-defensible

The Sensible Sentencing Trust has slammed lawyers who have defended Judge Jocelyn Munro’s comments in relation to the 16 year old youth who bashed and raped a 5-year old girl in Turangi.

Trust Spokesman Garth McVicar said the lawyers should be ashamed of themselves. “They are defending the in-defensible.”

The row has blown up after Judge Munroe said the youth accused of assaulting and raping the 5-year old was “looking smart” and allowed the young mans mother to read out a prayer supposedly written by the accused youth.

A number of lawyers and youth advocates sprang to the Judges defence saying she was only doing what the youth justice system required of her.

Mr. McVicar says the first responsibility of adult New Zealanders must surely be to defend the vulnerable and create an environment where women and children feel safe and are safe.

“Rather than defending Judge Munro’s comments and supporting a system that is obviously failing we –as citizens of this Country – have an overriding responsibility no-matter what our occupation to ensure that those who harm others are adequately punished.”

“Telling a young man accused of bashing and sexual violation of a 5 year old child that he is “looking smart” and allowing the mother to read out a so-called prayer is tantamount to sanctioning the crime and an absolute insult to the family and victim.”

“New Zealanders and visitors – young and old – are being subjected to horrific levels of violence at present. This is not the environment we want to bring our children up in – surely.”

“While I accept Judge Munro maybe enmeshed in a system that is not of her making I believe each and every-one of us have a priority responsibility to speak out against a system that is so obviously failing.”

“The reason we have such high levels of violence in New Zealand at present is that our legislators and law-makers have created an environment that has allowed crime to flourish.”

“To defend that system is defending the in-defensible.”

ENDS

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