Teen Crimes Skyrocket - Teen Appearances Drop

Something is seriously wrong with the youth justice system when there has been a decrease in court convictions for teens despite a massive increase in their serious offending, says New Zealand First.

“In the last year, there has been a huge 40 per cent increase in serious offending by 15 to 19 year olds, yet court convictions for the same age group have gone down by six per cent,” says Darroch Ball, New Zealand First Spokesperson for Youth Affairs.


It’s no wonder the number of dairy, liquor store and local business robberies have spiked when it is clear these young thugs are getting off scot free.


“The Minister of Justice Amy Adams needs to explain these offending and court conviction numbers, and why these teens aren’t being held to account for the seriousness of their crimes.


“Many of these serious offenders are repeatedly getting away with their crimes because they are cycling through the police diversion scheme, which presently acts like a permanent ‘get out of jail free card’.


“What the youth justice system needs is serious consequences and firm action by the court instead of the current ‘catch and release cotton-wool’ approach that this government encourages.


“New Zealand First’s Children, Young Persons, and Their Families (Youth Justice Demerit Points) Amendment Billwill address these issues,” says Mr Ball.