Victims’ faith in justice restored

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A SCHEME in which first-time offenders in South Yorkshire are confronted by their victims is going “from strength to strength”.

It allows victims of low-level crime such as criminal damage, shoplifting, assault and public order offences to explain the consequences and to influence the punishment. Offenders have the chance to make amends.

A total of 1,300 “restorative justice” cases were recorded in 2010/11 by the South Yorkshire Criminal Justice Board, which says there has been “a positive impact on the community as (victims’) faith is restored in local police and justice, and (they) can see immediate results”. The scheme is going “from strength to strength”.

The board says 1,500 first-time offenders, ranging from 10 to 90 years of age, have been diverted from the criminal justice system.