Give stiffer sentences to criminals!

Monday, May 27, 2019

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Dear Editor,

I note with horror a recent publication which stated that criminals out west, to include confessed murderers and gun-toting miscreants, are being allowed to waltz through our justice system.

I want to again state my disgust and utter abhorrence for how some judges are being lenient with the very same criminals who murdered so many. Is this the legacy you want to leave of your judgements handed down?

Jamaicans are hanging on to a thread of hope and the least the justice system can do is help in strengthening that idea so many, like myself, cherish.

Give stiffer sentences to criminals! If the laws are inadequate you have a minister to appeal to, and I'm almost certain that accessing the powers that be cannot be that difficult.

Sentencing is to provide a general and specific deterrent to crime. Neither the general population nor the specific group directly affected by crime is convinced that criminals are being punished appropriately.

Judges are supreme on the interpretations and applications of laws; therefore, I do not need to tell them how important it is to our freedom that they find a way to ensure crimes are paid for fully.

In these times, there should be no concurrent running sentences in gun- or murder-related matters, no small fines in egregious matters, and definitely no bail given to these kinds of offenders.

If we are to realise drastic changes in how people comply with the laws of Jamaica, to include the Road Traffic Act, the sentences issued by the court to lawbreakers must make that statement clear to all.

Joseph Edwards

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