“While gangs continue to run amuck endangering everyday Kiwis all across New Zealand, the Government is focused on repealing deterrents instead of cracking down on gangs,” says ACT’s Justice spokesperson Nicole McKee.

“Just last night an innocent construction worker’s home was shot up by Killer Beez in Auckland, while two days ago a three year old was left injured after a gang brawl in Hastings. We need to do better.

“Our communities aren’t safe anymore. We need to be cracking down on gangs, not removing the legal deterrents that might make them think twice about opening fire.

“If the Government vote in favour of repealing the Three Strikes legislation at second reading in Parliament today it will be sending a message to New Zealanders that it values ideology over safer communities.

“They also recently voted down my Bill that would have given police the ability to freeze and seize assets from gangs upon finding an illegally held firearm at a raid.

“Three Strikes was an ACT idea introduced in 2010 to send a signal to violent offenders that New Zealanders won’t tolerate repeated violent and sexual offending.

“The average Three Strikes offender has 75 convictions, and just 21 people have been sentenced to a Third Strike. It is used as a deterrent only to the worst violent criminals stalking our streets.

“New Zealanders are afraid to walk around their own neighbourhoods or put their children down to sleep at night in the front room, it’s appalling that Labour and the Greens’ priorities lie with making life easier for criminals instead of protecting Kiwis.

“A petition started by the ACT Party to keep the law has gained 10,000 signatures.

“ACT urges Labour and the Greens to see sense and put New Zealanders’ safety ahead of ideology before it’s too late. Now is not the time to be scrapping deterrents to violent criminals.”

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Nicole McKee