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Targeting the criminal to stop the crime: Government launches major new vision on security, crime and justice

Targeting the criminal to stop the crime: Government launches major new vision on security, crime and justice

HOME OFFICE News Release (057/2007) issued by The Government News Network on 27 March 2007

Tackling the offender and not just the offence is at the heart of a visionary strategy issued today which outlines ambitious policies for meeting the ever changing challenge of protecting the public. The detailed policy document reveals the Government's proposals and ideas for confronting crime and criminals over the next 10 years.

The wide-ranging report looks at how new technology, powers, service structures and ways of fighting offending will keep pace with an ever changing society. It aims to ensure victims and communities feel more secure while justice is effectively and efficiently done and seen to be done.

Building on Progress: Security, Crime and Justice looks at three themes:

* Prevention of crime. Proposals look at identifying and intervening with at-risk children as early as possible, targeting and gripping the most prolific offenders, and designing out crime.

* Detection and enforcement. The need to ensure the police, courts and CPS can punish crimes and enforce sentences as rapidly as possible and that they have all the powers they need to seize criminal assets and punish breach of probation orders.

* Reforming the criminal justice system. Making it work for the law abiding citizen by ensuring it is responsive to local people. This includes involving the best service providers for the job and proposes expanding the role of the voluntary sector while giving well paid, properly supported and flexible workforces all the powers they need to do the job.

These themes focus on tackling offenders across the criminal justice system; from the police on the street, through to the courts, prison and probation systems.

Among the measures being announced today the Government will undertake a review of the Police Service led by Sir Ronnie Flanagan, Her Majesty's Chief Inspector of Constabulary.

Home Secretary John Reid said:

"Security, crime and justice are the issues that most concern the public. It is important we continue to build on past successes in this area with new ideas that will lead to a safer society.

"Crime is down by 35 percent since 1997 but there is no room for complacency. We know that criminals will continue to find new ways of breaking our laws and attempting to avoid justice, we need to be one step ahead ensuring that the most serious and persistent offenders are dealt with swiftly and efficiently."

The prolific offender case management programme will be expanded to tackle the persistent offenders responsible for a disproportionately large number of crimes - 5,000 offenders are responsible for one crime in ten.

Tough new community punishments are also proposed with communities able to have their say on how offenders should contribute to society. Asset recovery is critical to the fight against all crime and is one of the Government's top priorities for law enforcement. The Government has set an ambitious new target with the aim of doubling the amount seized to £250 million by 2009-10. To help achieve this 'lifestyle property' will be added to asset recovery laws.

Notes to editors:

1. Building on Progress: Security, Crime and Justice looks at three themes. The report is available in full at http://www.homeoffice.gsi.gov.uk and http://www.number10.gov.uk

2. The review of the Police service will look into four key issues:

- Reducing bureaucracy and promote better business processes;

- Sustaining the excellent progress that has been made on neighbourhood policing;

- Ensuring that the public are driving local policing priorities and improve local involvement and accountability and;

- Managing resources effectively to deliver on the tough challenges of the coming years.

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