Prosecution of Māori for cannabis offences falling – Police Commissioner

Radio NZ News 18 November 2020
Family First Comment: Looks like the current law is working well.
40% reduction in cannabis prosecutions in the last 5 years. Statistics for the three months to September show prosecutions for Māori are down by 17%, and there’s been a 50% increase in warnings to Māori where there are two or more offences. Fewer than 20% of all people caught with cannabis were prosecuted, and 500 people have been referred to health professionals.
Health and coercion and deterrent of the law. 🙂
The Police Commissioner has rejected criticism that Māori are still being unfairly prosecuted for low level cannabis offences but is concerned they are more likely to be found in possession of the drug.
The Māori Council and the Drug Foundation say a law change last year giving police more discretionary powers has done nothing.
Andrew Coster told Nine to Noon the law change was intended to confirm what was already happening.
He said there has been about a 40 percent reduction in cannabis prosecutions in the last five years.
Statistics for the three months to September show prosecutions for Māori are down by 17 percent, and there’s been a 50 percent increase in warnings to Māori where there are two or more offences.
“So we have seen a continued ongoing trend of greater use of warnings and a lesser use of prosecutions and that is consistent with the trend that has been running over the last five years.”
Fewer than 20 percent of all people caught with cannabis were prosecuted, and 500 people have been referred to health professionals.
READ MORE: https://www.rnz.co.nz/news/national/430879/prosecution-of-maori-for-cannabis-offences-falling-police-commissioner

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