Cullingworth and Denholme MP criticises ‘inequality’ of sentencing

Keighley News: MP Philip Davies, who is calling for equality when it comes to sentencing MP Philip Davies, who is calling for equality when it comes to sentencing

MP Philip Davies – whose constituency includes Cullingworth and Denholme – has strongly criticised the government’s view women criminals should not be sent to prison if possible.

Mr Davies said a crime was a crime whether committed by a male or female, and showing leniency to women was unacceptable and sent out the wrong message.

“I would have hoped we all believe in equality between men and wom-en,” he said.

“Surely that must mean the courts should be gender-blind so that women offenders are treated in exactly the same way as men. It is a scandal this is not happening.”

Last month, Ministry of Justice figures revealed in all categories of crimes, men were more likely to be sent to prison than women.

Statistics, uncovered by Mr Davies, also showed of 46,428 women tried for first offences last year, a total of 1,078 were sent to prison – 2.3 per cent. In comparison, 5.1 per cent of men – 6,490 of the 127,647 – went to jail.

Speaking in Justice Questions, Mr Davies challenged whether the figures were correct.

Justice Minister, Jeremy Wright, said: “It is always in the minds of the sentencers to try to avoid sentencing in particular female offenders to custody.”

Mr Davies added: “I am not sure how those who are most vocal on the issue of equality can be the same people who believe women should be given more favourable treatment by the courts than men.

“I believe in true equality, and sentences should be handed out irrespective of the gender or race or religion or sexuality of the offender.”

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