Senator calls for Department of Justice in Jersey

NEW Department of Justice with a minister in charge should be created to ensure that there is political accountability for justice policy, according to a States Senator.

Senator Lyndon Farnham is proposing a Department of Justice
Senator Lyndon Farnham is proposing a Department of Justice

NEW Department of Justice with a minister in charge should be created to ensure that there is political accountability for justice policy, according to a States Senator.

Senator Lyndon Farnham wants the Chief Minister to look into creating the new department, which would be similar to the UK's Ministry of Justice, because he says there is currently a gap in the system which means that there is no one to hold to account or to be scrutinised by politicians when it comes to justice matters.

He has now lodged a proposition with the States calling for Chief Minister Ian Gorst to investigate the possibility and report back to the States by the end of July 2013.

Comments for: "Senator calls for Department of Justice in Jersey"

S2

"hold to account or to be scrutinised by politicians"!! Good grief!. King Herod should be in charge of the creche before this happens. Too many politicians have got too many personal agendas for this to happen and I can't think of anyone who is remotely qualified to adjudicate on justice matters.

Old Crappo

Here we go again creating a new department based on a formula used in the UK, is this the suggestion of Mr. Farnham or of some senior civil servant from the UK who now works for the States? and how many new civil servant posts will this department creat the majority of which I assume would have to be filled by people from outside the Island as we have no one here at the moment who is up to the task. Just how much is this little folley going to cost the Jersey tax payer Mr. Farnham?

Tony B

Another case of the States calling kettles black. The old saw comes to mind. Two sets of people sneer at the law, those who breack it and those who make it. Annoying though it may seem, in English democracy the Law has always been seperate from Polotics.

J.V Jaundice

As ever, this sounds a sensible approach on the face of it BUT!

If you conflate the Ian Christmas 'We pay him but have no say whatsoever' element with the ever so sensible (you'd have to be mad to disagree surely;))Confederation of Channel Islands (Greater Jersey).

Suddenly you can see the background, in that this removes the control from Westminster over the judiciary which ,it is true, is unaccountable ,to the controlling politician clique who would now control by purse strings etc. the legal system.

Not good !Shafted either way.

I Pasdenom

I don't pretend to understand the complexities of the whole thing, but I'm not so stupid that I can't see that paying a criminal £100k a year not to do be judge is just simply wrong!

If these proposal meant that when we recognise a Judge (or the system) is failing we can act then I'm all for it; likewise if it seperates properly the Police from the judgement process, because at the moment we have crap judges and crap Police working in the interests of each other, and not justice.

BORIS

Justice ??? What does that mean ? Justice for who or what ? I seem to hear of more cases where the innocent get no justice and the guilty do ! When a claim of justice and legal rights cross, there seems to be no logic ! Abu Qatada who is guilty of what was once called treason, is allowed to stay in the UK due to his right to legal appeal of justice,and this from the very country he is against, and can legally claim legal handouts ! Sorry Sen Farnham, on paper it may sound fair, but in logic it will only create more legal problems and red tape that will create more hurdles, not mention create a need for new employment in various positions to cover this new department in a time where i thought the object was to lower the islands running purse !

Kermit

After the Ian Christmas story, something definitively needs to be done.

You couldn't even imagine some stories like that.

Shame on the system.

His move, could be a senator last attempt to get another job as a minister if Senator positions are to go. I am probably wrong but who knows...

Gwasbach

Borris # 6. When you say the innocent get no justice, are you referring to victims of crime? If so I agree 100% In the meantime all the ace cards are held by defendants in criminal prosecutions, aided an abetted by their advocates who look for technical breaches in procedure by the cops or Crown Offices. Never mind whether or not their client has commited the offence, its a game thats got to be won.

There are so many legal rules on how evidence can be collated and hoops and hurdles investigators have to negotiate to bring a prosecution. Of course there needs to be safeguards in place, to make sure innocent people aren't wrongly convicted, but over the years more and more advantages have been given to the defence. Little on the other hand, has been done to assist victims.

Even when there is a successful investigation, Centenirs may inappropriately dispose of a case, otherwise Magistrates or Judges give weak sentences.

I recall many years ago, an 18 month old child, had been subjected to the most terrible injuries (fractures to limbs) by his guardians. When convicted, the offenders weren't imprisoned, but instead were placed on probation.Yet people caught in possession of small amounts of drugs with intent to supply were sent to jail - how can that be right. A serious assault on an infant is surely more worthy of imprisonment that a drugs offence.

Judges seem to have too much discretion and need to be more accountable. That is what I would hope to see a Department of Justice sort out. Justice must not just be done; it must be seen to be done.

BORIS

Yes thats exactly what i meant - and your more detailed words are put in a far better way than i ever could create myself. I have first hand experience of your mentioning of the conduct of Parish officials disposing of cases lightly, where the youth was just given a caution, and was left with a bill to pay for damage to my car, and was told if i wanted compensation I would have to sue him through the legal system. To the guilty a caution, to Boris a £125 bill !

Gwasbach

Unfortunately this occurs throughout the British Isles, not just Jersey.

Whilst many extol the Honorary Police system in Jersey, it has its flaws when it comes to considering recompense for the victims of criminal acts.Much the same occurs in the U.K. in the Magistrates and Crown Court. It would be far better they awarded more compensation and imposed a lesser fine so victims don't lose out.

One problem, particularly in the U.K., is the courts do little to fine defaulters, or those who don't pay the compensation. You'd expect them to give an alternative sentence like imprisonment, but I've seen Magistrates totally remit fines, just because a fine defaulter pleaded poverty - without proof that was infact true.

Too much emphasis is placed on the rights of the offender and little attention is paid to victims. I am sorry you suffered in the way you related above.

If there is to be a department of justice, I hope they really look hard at the treatment of victims and redress the balance.

prospero ano neuvo y felicidad

I remember in the not too distant past MR Ozouf saying yhay savings of 65 million pounds had to be saved over the next three years, I think the last thing we need is yet another money haemorrhaging states department.I hope this is a non starter.

Gwasbach

Surely justice is priceless yet probably unachieveable in our sick society.