back to latest news

Review needed of Sentencing Practices in Violent Crimes

26 June 2024

Labour Leader Ivana Bacik TD today in the Dáil called for the Minister for Justice to announce a review of sentencing practices, particularly in respect of the use of suspended sentences for violent crimes. This announcement follows the courageous advocacy of Natasha O’Brien, who has spoken out about the brutal attack she endured from Cathal Crotty and her harrowing experience within the criminal justice system.

Deputy Bacik said

“I joined protesters on Saturday, and I will stand with them again this evening at 6.00pm, demanding better protection and justice for victims and survivors of Gender and Sexual Based Violence.

“In the Dail today, I expressed my solidarity with Natasha O’Brien and paid tribute to her immense courage and to her powerful advocacy. Her case has resonated with people across the country, as is evident from the numerous communications I have received urging for action to be taken to tackle violence against women and ensure greater support for victims. We must ensure that victims are not let down by the very system meant to protect them.

“We urgently need to see the publication of clear sentencing guidelines by the Judicial Council. Today I have also called on the Minister for Justice to confirm that she will initiate a review of sentencing practices, in particular the practice of suspending custodial sentences in cases of violent crime. It is time to act decisively to ensure that our legal system delivers true justice and support for victims of violent crimes.”