Violent crime victim aid must be funded by perpetrator income says minister

Minister of Justice Urmas Reinsalu (Centre).
Minister of Justice Urmas Reinsalu (Centre). Source: Priit Mürk/ERR

Minister of Justice Urmas Reinsalu (Pro Patria) has stated that income appropriated from criminal offenders needs to go toward supporting the victims of the crime. Mr. Reinsalu was speaking after meeting representatives of organisations helping victims of violence

Mr. Reinsalu said that it is important to offer victims of violence comprehensive support and help them understand that the violence suffered is never the victim's fault.

"We must take note of violence and take concrete steps to ensure that any victim is not left alone," the minister said.

More practically, Mr. Reinsalu has developed fundamental principles of criminal policy down to 2030, which focus on applying the principles of restorative justice and the protection of crime victims.

Offender should be made responsible

At a round table discussion, Mr. Reinsalu introduced a plan to redirect income confiscated from criminal offenders towards supporting the victims.

"The offender must assume responsibility for the victim and remedy and compensate for the damages caused," he said.

A national plan of action for victim protection is to be developed as the next step, it was agreed at the meeting.

Participants of the round table discussion included representatives of the National Social Insurance Board, two NGOs, Ohvriabi (Victim Support) and NGO Eluliin (Lifeline), the Estonian Evangelical Lutheran Church, the Office of the Prosecutor General and the Ministry of Justice.

The meeting held this week was a continuation of the round table convened by the justice minister last week to discuss combating youth violence following a spike in incidents in at least one central Tallinn park. The minister will also meet with prosecutors and police officers dealing with youth and youth gangs in Ida-Viru County on Friday, it is reported.

Editor: Andrew Whyte

Source: BNS

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