Tuesday, July 16, 2024

Returning offenders Bill passed

A Bill ensuring the ongoing management and monitoring of returning offenders to improve public safety has passed today with strong support from across Parliament, said Justice Minister, Kiri Allan.

The Returning Offenders (Management and Information) Amendment Bill clarifies Parliament’s original intent for the Act, to apply retrospectively in respect of all returning offenders, including those who offended before the Act came into force.

This directly responds to a recent High Court decision which determined the Act does not apply retrospectively.

“These urgent amendments are necessary to ensure Police and Corrections can continue to manage the risks posed by returning offenders with pre-2015 convictions along with future returning offenders with pre-2015 offending histories,” Minister Allan said.

“They will both enhance the safety of our communities and support the rehabilitation and reintegration of returning offenders into New Zealand.

“The regime ensures that Police are able to collect information from returning offenders to establish their identity and offending history. In serious cases, the Act allows for parole-like release conditions on returning offenders, to enable their reintegration into the community.

“Parole is a normal part of our criminal justice system and the Bill only puts returning offenders in a similar position they would have been in if had they offended in New Zealand,” she said.

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