Justice secretary backs Drive for Justice campaign

Alan Mak with the Lord Chancellor and Justice Secretary, Liz Truss MP, discussing plans for tougher sentences on killer drivers
Alan Mak with the Lord Chancellor and Justice Secretary, Liz Truss MP, discussing plans for tougher sentences on killer drivers

Cyclist fined for riding along the M275

0
Have your say

THE justice secretary has praised The News campaign calling for tougher sentences for those who kill on the roads.

Liz Truss MP said The News and its sister papers’ Drive for Justice campaign worked ‘tirelessly’ for victims’ families.

It comes just days after the Ministry of Justice announced killer drivers may face life sentences.

The current 14-year maximum for causing death by dangerous driving has been widely-criticised.

Her comments came at a meeting with Havant MP Alan Mak who also backed the campaign that has sought to represent bereaved families.

In a statement, Mrs Truss said: ‘The News and its sister papers have tirelessly campaigned on this important issue, calling for tougher sentences for those who drive dangerously and kill on our roads. Nothing can compensate for the death of a loved one but the government wants to make sure the punishment fits the crime.’

Tragic cases include the deaths of Olivia Lewry, 16, and Jasmine Allsop, 14, who were killed in November 2013 by a speeding drug-driver.

Nearly 3,000 people have signed a petition since it was launched, supporting tougher sentencing and a shutting down of legal loopholes.

The investigation by Johnston Press reporters revealed that no-one in the UK had ever received the maximum term.

The government’s consultation proposes increasing to a life sentence the maximum punishment for a charge of causing death by careless driving under the influence of drink or drugs.

Mr Mak said: ‘Killer drivers rip apart families and ruin lives so I’m fully behind these new proposals. The pain felt by loved ones will stay with them for the rest of their lives, which is why we need to make the punishment fit the crime.

‘Reading some of the tragic stories highlighted by the Drive for Justice campaign has made it evident that more needs to be done. That’s why the government’s message is absolutely clear – if you drive dangerously and kill on our roads, you could face a life sentence.’

Scotland’s first minister Nicola Sturgeon has also backed the campaign.

‘Those who drive dangerously and kill people ruin lives, not just of those who die but also their family and friends,’ she said.

n Sign the petition at bit.ly/2hoS0Wr and contribute to the government consultation at consult.justice.gov.uk