Govt to introduce new legislation to target gangland crime
Updated / Thursday, 17 Sep 2020 00:00
The Government is to bring in new legislation to increase the maximum jail sentence for conspiracy to murder to life in prison.
Gardaí, victims of crime and members of the judiciary have in the past highlighted the perceived leniency of the sentence – at present a maximum of ten years – for such a serious crime.
Minister for Justice Helen McEntee said the increase is targeted at gangland criminals.
She also announced that another new separate piece of legislation would create three new terrorist offences.
Nineteen members of the Kinahan Organised Crime Group have been jailed at the Special Criminal Court in the last two years, nine of them for conspiracy to murder.
All have been jailed for less than ten years – the maximum sentence for the offence, which has remained so since 1861.
The presiding judge at the Special Criminal Court, who has found the Kinahan gang to be involved in execution-style murders, has also highlighted what he called this “anomaly” in the law when it comes to sentencing gangsters involved in attempted assassinations.
Mr Justice Tony Hunt said he was of a mind to impose more severe penalties on the foiled assassins, but his “hands were tied” by the law.
Senior Kinahan gang members Alan Wilson, Dean Howe and Liam Brannigan were jailed for six, six and eight-and-a-half years respectively for trying to kill a rival Hutch gang member, while the Estonian hitman Imre Arakas, who came to Ireland to kill a Hutch gang member, also received six years.
Today, the Minister for Justice announced that the Government will draft new legislation to increase the maximum sentence for conspiracy to murder to life in prison.
Helen Mc Entee said the law is targeted at gangland criminals and that the seriousness of the crime must be reflected in the sentences judges can impose.
The Minister also announced that the Government has approved a new bill, which will create new terrorist offences: Travelling for the purpose of terrorism, organising or facilitating such travel, and receiving training for terrorism.