Justice is being denied almost “to the point of extinction”, the chief inspector of constabulary has warned.
Sir Thomas Winsor said there are “very serious problems that the criminal justice system has in its operations” which are leading to “disgraceful” delays as well as injustices.
He added: “Justice delayed is justice denied and it is being denied almost to the point of extinction.” There is a “mismatch” between police funding and public expectation, he said, and “time will tell” if the Government succeeds in its promise to hire 20,000 police officers in three years.
But the “impact will take some years to be felt by the communities they serve”, he added.
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His comments at the National Police Chiefs’ Council and Association of Police and Crime Commissioners summit, came after NPCC chairman Martin Hewitt told the conference that the criminal justice system “must be repaired” and needs to be “fit to cope”.
He said: “We can all see it’s not coping now. It’s creaking and in places it’s breaking.
“More importantly, it’s letting down victims and leaving criminals to walk free. Crime is too high and justice is far too often
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The consensus is that “crime is too high and justice is far too often not done”, he said, adding: “As the new recruits begin to arrive, the intense pressure that has been placed on our people in recent years will start to ease.
“Over time I have no doubt that it will improve crime rates and reduce the number of victims.
“We won’t achieve these results overnight. But I am confident that the tide is starting to turn and we will be in a much better place in three years’ time.”
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