Johnson’s recent article in the Sunday Express, which is also likely to be the subject of a speech on Tuesday, received short shrift from the Secret Barrister who pointed out:
Johnson’s idea that “making this country safe is the single best and most effective way of levelling up” is empty rhetoric when you fail to diagnose why and which parts of the country are not currently safe.
And, if they aren’t, then it probably has something to do with being ruled by a party that cut 21,000 Police Officers, 23,000 Police support staff and then managed to properly finish the job by closing 600 police stations.
Then of course, as the Secret Barrister points out, the failure to fund the justice system leads to the innocence tax and delays of up to two and a half years before cases come to trial.
Which crime victim really wants to wait that long for a resolution – many even give up on wanting to testify – and who can blame them?
One only has to learn from the disaster of rape cases so cogently described here in Yorkshire Bylines to understand that harsher sentences are mere virtue signalling if the chances of the relevant offence ever actually coming to trial are vanishingly small.
The police are not, for example, resourced for everyday fraud, which has ballooned, especially since on line commerce and banking has grown so popular. The answer to the question as to why you robbed a bank used to be that that was where the money was – but now that is no longer the case – money is everywhere and you can usually find your money simply by working from home.
Action Fraud itself is actually a contracted call centre…
The government like, the Daily Mail, prefers to start with the headline sentence for a crime and leave it at that.
Instead it should be looking at causes, ensuring robust processes and actually treating a sentence as a last resort as well as prima facie evidence of governmental failure.
Only then will the country be ‘safer’.