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Government should repair damage to national law enforcement agencies before talking to the states



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Michael Keenan MP - Federal Member for Stirling GOVERNMENT SHOULD REPAIR DAMAGE TO NATIONAL LAW ENFORCEMENT AGENCIES BEFORE TALKING TO THE STATES March 06, 2013

After years of incompetent mismanagement of our federal law enforcement agencies the Gillard Government now wants to introduce national crime fighting laws that could remove powers from the states, despite their terrible track record of protecting Australia’s borders and fighting organised crime, Shadow Minister for Justice, Customs and Border Protection Michael Keenan said.

“The best assistance this Prime Minister can provide to the states is to make sure that her Government is doing its job properly in protecting Australia’s borders and stop crippling our federal law enforcement agencies,” Mr Keenan said.

“Since coming to office Labor has systematically made cuts to critical areas of our law enforcement agencies including 750 staff cuts from Customs and delaying their promise of 500 new Australian Federal Police officers.

“Labor has also been using the Commonwealth Proceeds of Crime funding to prop up their budget bottom line rather than for the intended purpose of crime prevention projects - something that the Coalition will rightly overturn.

“The Australian Crime Commission, who is tasked with investigating serious and organized crime, has had 144 staff cuts from a total workforce of just over 500 staff, which has seriously hindered its ability to effectively do its job.

“Before the Government asks for referral of powers from the states they should start by reversing the damaging cuts they have made to the federal law enforcement agencies.

“If Labor was serious about helping communities fight crime, they would immediately reverse their decision to freeze funds that have been seized from criminals under the Proceeds of Crime laws and make this money available to the community to assist in crime prevention, law enforcement and ways to address drug abuse,

“They should then reinstate the $58 million in funding Labor stripped from Customs cargo inspections, which under Labor has given criminal gangs a 90-95 per cent chance of successfully smuggling illegal guns, drugs and other contraband across our borders and onto our streets.

“Labor has no credibility when it comes to dealing with the critical national issue of protecting Australia’s borders and stopping organized crime around the country,” Mr Keenan said.

© Authorised by Michael Keenan MP, 203 Wanneroo Road, Tuart Hill WA 6060

www.keenan.net.au

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