26 September 2023

Tough times ahead for repeat offenders

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The Department of Children, Youth Justice and Multicultural Affairs has announced a move towards tough new laws aimed at dealing with serious repeat offenders.

In a statement, the Department said it would now be harder for serious repeat offenders to get bail, while more funding will be allocated to tackling the complex causes of youth crime.

“The vast majority of young people who come into contact with the Youth Justice System do not offend again following diversionary and rehabilitation programs, but for the 17 per cent of young offenders who are committing 50 per cent of crimes, more measures will be put in place,” the Department said.

This included breaching bail — for the first time this century breaching bail conditions for young offenders is to be an offence in Queensland.

Conditional release orders are to be extended from the maximum period of three months to six months and repeat offenders will also serve their suspended term in detention if they breach a condition.

“The Youth Justice Act will be amended to declare certain offenders as ‘serious repeat offenders’, meaning tougher sentencing principles to protect community safety must be applied,” the Department said.

Launching the new laws, Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said the Government had listened to the community and was putting community safety first.

“We will use the full force of the law to target the small cohort of serious repeat offenders that currently pose a threat to community safety,” Ms Palaszczuk said.

“When these kids reoffend time and again we need the police to catch them — and we need the courts to do their job,” he said.

“They have the resources. They have the laws. They have the tools,” he said.

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