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Vic tightens community corrections orders

AAP logoAAP 11/10/2016 Kaitlyn Offer and Angus Livingston

Up to 100 Victorians who have committed serious crimes like rape will get mandatory jail rather than community corrections orders.

The orders were introduced under the previous Coalition state government and led to some serious offenders skipping jail.

"We've had far too many people committing heinous crimes, violent crimes, and getting a slap on the wrist, rather than a custodial sentence they so richly deserve," Premier Daniel Andrews told reporters on Wednesday.

"We're essentially mandating a jail term. The length of a jail term is still a matter for judges."

Past controversial cases involving community corrections orders have included:

- A man found with hundreds of images and videos of child porn, including the rape of a child, 6, whose jail term was suspended for four years and put on a three-year CCO

- A principal who became obsessed with a Year 12 student and sent her 3500 text messages and breached an interim intervention order was put on a two-year CCO with 250 hours community service

- Two thugs who attacked an intellectually disabled man in a Geelong library, leaving him with a broken arm, got a nine-month and 12-month CCO.

The change affects future sentences of up to 100 criminals, the premier said.

Attorney-General Martin Pakula said in the past, such orders were applied to rape and "it shouldn't happen."

"In 2015, there were about three rapes that got community corrections orders," Mr Pakula said.

Under the new laws, crimes like murder, rape, sexual abuse of a child under 16, and commercial drug trafficking will no longer be eligible for community corrections orders.

Community corrections and other non-custodial orders will also not be allowed, except where special reasons apply, for offences including manslaughter, child homicide, kidnapping and intentionally causing serious injury.

Opposition leader Matthew Guy said his party would "most likely" support the changes, but admonished the government for the time it took to make them.

"This arose in December 2014...why hasn't he done anything since December 2014," he said.

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