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Friday 13th July 2012 | 10:57
Ministry of Justice
The Minister of State, Ministry of Justice (Nick Herbert):
Today, the Government’s White Paper on criminal justice reform, Swift and Sure Justice: the Government’s Plans for Reform of Criminal Justice has been laid before Parliament.
The White Paper sets out a programme of reform which builds on some of the lessons learned from the response to last year’s disturbances, during which the Police, prosecutors and courts worked together - and offenders were brought to justice within days, sometimes even hours.
The programme focuses on the points where work passes between the agencies and is designed to enable them to work together more effectively to deliver services which are:
swift: so that the low level, straightforward and uncontested cases are dealt with promptly and efficiently; and
sure: so that the system grips offenders at an early stage, preventing the slideinto more serious offending.
The White Paper sets out for example, how we are already making better use of technology and managing cases more efficiently. It also sets out proposals for a new role for magistrates, reinforcing their historic role in community justice. From November, Police and Crime Commissioners will be in place to help galvanise local police, prosecution, courts and other agencies to work together to prevent crime and reduce reoffending.
The reforms aim to transform criminal justice from a fragmented, paper based system into a seamless, streamlined service. They complement the wider reforms to crime and justice we are taking forward to improve policing, to tackle anti-social behaviour, to introduce more effective punishments and community sentences, and to deliver better services for victims.
Taken together, they are the foundation of our strategy to reduce crime and the victims it creates.