December 13, 2013
De Narváez, Macri hail BA province’s, nation’s measuresSunday, September 8, 2013
Scioli: ‘crime, not gov’t has changed’
The Buenos Aires Province Peronist Governor Daniel Scioli, responding to criticism that he was adopting a slugs-for-thugs approach to crime, yesterday said that his recent splitting of the Justice and Security ministry did not entail a change in policies but responded to a change in crime patterns.
“What has changed is crime, not the government,” he said. “The government interprets the changing characteristics of this problem and must adapt prevention policies to new technologies, and also update laws.”
No precisions about the crime changes mentioned by Scioli were immediately available.
The remarks by Scioli, who plans to run for president in 2015 to succeed Peronist President Cristina Fernández de Kirchner, were echoed by national Security Secretary Sergio Berni.
“The national state has always abided by the law. The Criminal Code is very clear but many times the problem is that judges make a soft interpretation of it. Judges need to be stricter when making decisions. Sometimes there is a lack of will to work. It is easier to free an arrested person than to launch a probe. Those of us who patrol Buenos Aires City streets are tired of arresting the same person two or three times for the same crime,” Berni said.
Scioli on September 5 appointed Alejandro Granados, the mayor of the Greater Buenos Aires district of Ezeiza, Provincial Security Minister, while leaving Ricardo Casal as Justice Minister.
Scioli fell short of mentioning the number of 100,000 police officers demanded by Granados, but said: “We are planning to add 6,000 police officers per year over the next five years, which would mean 30,000 additional officers, on top of the existing 60,000. An this will grow.”
DE NARVÁEZ & MACRI
Meanwhile, tycoon Francisco de Narváez, who is seeking to renew his national Lower House seat for the Buenos Aires province for the dissident Peronist Front United for Freedom and Labour, said that Scioli’s splitting the Security and Justice Ministry will be “useful to align the national and provincial security policies.”
For his part, Buenos Aires City Mayor Mauricio Macri, who also plans to run for president for his centre-right PRO party, said that measures announced by the federal administration entailed an “acknowledgement” that anti-crime national policies have failed.
“We see a commitment to invest, furnish and respect the Federal Police and some improvements start to be seen. In Buenos Aires province things are worse.” Macri added that the City police he created amid a dispute with the national administration is a top-notch force. “We have 5,000 officers and are going for 15,000.”
DEBATE ON CRIMINAL RESPONSIBILITY
Meanwhile, the Mayor of Lomas de Zamora Martín Insaurralde, the leading candidate to the Lower House for Fernández de Kirchner’s Victory Front for the October mid-term election, is fostering a project to lower the criminal responsibility age to 16 years from 18, a plan that has drawn criticism from centre-left leaders as entailing a turn to the right.
Berni told radio El Mundo that “this deserves a serious debate with the intervention not only of Congress, but also the Judiciary and the Government, to keep young delinquents away from crime.” He admitted that there were different views within Kirchnerism regarding that issue.
Herald staff with DyN