This week the Government has introduced new legislation to Parliament which will deliver on the manifesto commitment to give the police and courts greater powers to do their jobs, whilst ensuring the most violent criminals spend longer behind bars.
Welcoming the Police, Crime, Sentencing and Court Bill, Matthew Barber said:
“We need a fair justice system – one has the confidence of the law-abiding majority and this new legislation will be a big step towards ensuring punishments fit the severity of the crime.
“I am particularly pleased to see the introduction of long awaited measures to help the police deal with illegal encampments that can cause harm, disruption and distress to our local communities. The new legislation would give the police powers to fine or arrest those responsible and the power to seize vehicles.
“As well as ensuring tougher sentences this bill will also help the police to keep our streets safe and reduce violence across Thames Valley. I want to ensure that Thames Valley Police is one of the first forces to make use of the new Serious Violence Reduction Orders in order to tackle knife crime.”
If passed by Parliament the new legislation will give new protections and powers for the police while reforming sentencing with measures including:
- Whole Life Orders for child killers
- New powers to halt the automatic early release of offenders who pose a danger to the public and ending the halfway release of offenders sentenced for serious violent and sexual offences
- Introducing life sentences for killer drivers.
- Serious Violence Reduction Orders – new stop and search powers against convicted knife offensive weapons offenders.
- Enshrining the police covenant in law.
- Strengthening police powers to tackle unauthorised encampments.
- Doubling the maximum sentence for assaulting an emergency worker from 12 months to two years.
- Ensuring community sentences are stricter and better target underlying causes of crime such as mental health issues, alcohol or drug addiction.
- Increasing the maximum penalty for criminal damage of a memorial from three months to 10 years.