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Welcome for 'Avoidable Delay in Justice Report' – Anderson

1 July, 2010 - by Maeve McLaughlin

Sinn Féin Policing Board Member, Martina Anderson MLA (Foyle) has given an initial welcome to the recommendations of the Criminal Justice Inspector’s (CJI) report into avoidable delay in our court system and the Chief Justice's report into the sentencing regime.


Ms Anderson said:


“I will study these reports and their recommendations in detail but on initial reading I would welcome their content.

“Both the PSNI and the PPS come in for particular criticism for failure to address the problems of the time it takes to progress prosecutions from charge to conclusion of process. Unfortunately neither agency seem to recognise their inefficiencies, with the PSNI accusing the PPS of not properly processing cases forwarded for prosecution and the PPS countering that the PSNI fail to complete the majority of Occurrence Management forms efficiently, creating avoidable delay in the system.


“The Report author states the old adage of ‘Justice delayed is justice denied’ and no description could be more appropriate in relation to the lessons that need to be learned by those tasked with the administration of Justice and delivery of accountable community policing. If police officers are not capable of filling out a simple form properly in 71% of cases then how is the general public supposed to have confidence that they can carry out other areas of their duties properly and efficiently.


“If the PPS has not put in place an acceptable standard of information required for processing and conveyed this requirement to the PSNI then it too is part of the problem and will have to change.


"The Chief Justice, Declan Morgan's report and recommendations on sentencing procedure published today should be complimentary to the findings of the CJI report and together form the foundation for establishing a Criminal Justice System encompassing Policing, the Prosecution Service and the Judiciary which will build confidence in the public. ENDS

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