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Facing up to victims; COMMENT The policy of honesty. The might of right. The expediency of principle.

THE battle against anti-social behaviour and minor crime is never-ending. The criminal justice system has tried several schemes over the years, including Anti-Social Behaviour Orders which have proved to be successful when used correctly to target the prolific troublemakers who can then find themselves in jail if they break their ASBO conditions.

But now the authorities are trying something new by bringing offenders and their victims face-to-face.These kind of schemes have happened before and have even involved serious crimes but the aim here is to make the perpetrators of so-called nuisance offences realise the big impact it can have on victims. Many of those responsible for anti-social behaviour and more minor crimes such as graffiti, criminal damage and petty theft often do it as part of a bigger crowd.

The gang mentality can kick in, leading them astray, but by sitting them down as individuals in the same room as the people whose lives they have plagued will give them the chance to see that the effect they are having can be anything but petty.

Anti-social behaviour can blight people's lives to the extent that they live in misery and apprehension. Anything that can tackle this head-on must be welcomed as a step in the right direction.
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Publication:Huddersfield Daily Examiner (Huddersfield, England)
Date:Jul 16, 2012
Words:208
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