Blair has not been tough on the causes of crime, says Woolf
Friday 23 April 2004
Tony Blair has failed to honour his main pledge on law and order, suggested Lord Woolf, the Lord Chief Justice, to an audience of lawyers and academics.
Tony Blair has failed to honour his main pledge on law and order, the country's senior judge suggested last night. Lord Woolf, the Lord Chief Justice, told an audience of lawyers and academics that politicians "were not being sufficiently tough on the causes of crime''.
Tony Blair's promise to be "tough on crime and tough on the causes of crime'' became a decisive Labour mantra in the run-up to the party's landslide victory in the 1997 general election.
But last night Lord Woolf delivered an attack on the effectiveness of government policy in tackling prison overcrowding and failings in the criminal justice system. In a speech in which he asked, "do we need a new approach to the penal policy?'', Lord Woolf said: "Unfortunately, it has to be accepted that, for many years now the public have little confidence in the ability of the criminal justice system to ensure justice is done.
"Regrettably, each part of the system has appeared to be failing the public. Far too few of those responsible for crimes were being detected and, of those who were detected, the percentage who were successfully prosecuted to conviction was regrettably low.''
He said that, in recent years, there had been "no shortage of reviews of penal process" but each revealed "a mind-blowing situation involving vast expenditure with little, if any, long term improvement''. Lord Woolf, who was delivering the Mishcon Lecture at University College London, quoted Home Office predictions that showed the prison population would rise to 109,600 by the end of the decade.
He also said that reoffending by former prisoners cost society at least £11bn a year and that former prisoners were responsible for about one in five of all recorded crimes.
Missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370: Wreckage could be found within a week as search reaches 'very critical juncture', says minister
The man they forgot to lock up: Mike Anderson was sentenced to 13 years in jail, but the police never came
Unbeliebable: The White House offer 'no comment' to anti-Justin Bieber petition
Loch Ness Monster found on Apple Maps?
South Korea ferry disaster: Families watch as remains of Sewol victims returned to shore
The food poverty scandal that shames Britain: Nearly 1m people rely on handouts to eat – and benefit reforms may be to blame
Scottish independence: It is the English who should be on their knees, begging the Scots to vote ‘No’
'Sinful': Video of British Muslims dancing to Pharrell Williams's hit Happy comes under attack
Nigel Farage: I’m taking on the status quo, and the Establishment’s fighting back
An open letter to Nigel Farage: you may smile, but I am not seduced
Abdullah Deghayes: My son was the martyr of a just cause, says father of British teenager killed in Syria conflict
- 1 Easter egg hunt horror as mother finds dead body under deck of house
- 2 A bottle of wine a day is not bad for you and abstaining is worse than drinking, scientist claims
- 3 Unbeliebable: The White House offer 'no comment' to anti-Justin Bieber petition
- 4 Loch Ness Monster found on Apple Maps?
- 5 Shropshire criminals ‘using unmanned drones and infrared cameras to find illegal cannabis farms’ – and then steal from the growers
£130 - £140 per day: Randstad Education Ilford: Secondary Geography Teacher Lo...
£55 - £70 per day: Randstad Education Cheshire: Are you a dynamic and energeti...
Negotiable: Randstad Education Group: SEN TAs, LSAs and Support Workers needed...
£50000 - £60000 per annum: Pro-Recruitment Group: The Sheffield office of this...