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Conservative candidate for Halton Ben Jones claims Cheshire Police attempts to snare offenders are being undone by the Crown Prosecution Service


http://www.runcornandwidnesweeklynews.co.uk/runcorn-widnes-news/runcorn-widnes-local-news/2009/09/17/conservative-candidate-for-halton-ben-jones-claims-cheshire-police-attempts-to-snare-offenders-are-being-undone-by-the-crown-prosecution-service-55368-24703715

EFFORTS to snare prolific career criminals in Halton are being undermined by the soft legal system, claims MP hopeful Ben Jones.

Mr Jones, the prospective Conservative parliamentary candidate for Halton, says frontline officers know who the most prolific offenders are, but efforts to put them behind bars are being ‘undone’ even after they’ve been caught.

He said: “From my recent meetings with Cheshire Police, it’s clear they have a good idea who is the source of most of their burglaries. From these discussions, it’s clear that identifying repeat offenders is not the problem. But getting the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) to pursue them or the courts to take firm action is where their hard work gets undone.

“Officers told me of one recent case of a Halton man, who upon leaving court had reoffended and was in custody again within an hour. The public has a right to expect the CPS and courts to back up the police in getting these people off the streets and out of our houses.

“Whether in Halton or elsewhere they have to do better; the current approach is failing us all.”

Ian Rushton, the chief Crown prosecutor for Cheshire, said: “The CPS is committed to bringing criminals to justice and protecting the communities we serve.

“Charging a person with a criminal offence is a serious matter. We’ll only charge an individual if we feel that we have a realistic prospect of conviction.”