Oral Answers to Questions — Justice

Part of the debate – in the Northern Ireland Assembly at 2:45 pm on 17th February 2020.

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Photo of John Stewart John Stewart UUP 2:45 pm, 17th February 2020

I welcome the Minister to her position and wish her the best of luck in the years ahead. I appreciate that she is only one month into post, but she will know that both her predecessors announced reviews of sentencing tariffs for murders. Does she agree that it is an absolute disgrace that, in 2017, the average sentence for a murder in Northern Ireland was 11 years and 4 months, some 10 years less than the equivalent in England and Wales? When is Northern Ireland going to lose its reputation for being soft on murderers?