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CRIMINAL LAW

Police Diversion

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This site will give you everything you need to know about the Police Diversion scheme.

This is a chance for the first offendor,  if they are considered to be a suitable case for diversion, to avoid being left with a criminal conviction.

We will tell you all about the scheme and give you some helpful tips.

For a number of years now,  (1997)   the Police have organised and operated what is known as an adult diversion system throughout New Zealand. It is fairly informal because there is no specific recognition of the diversion scheme in any of our laws relating to the Courts.

However, almost all the District Court Judges, with one or two exceptions, have agreed that that the diversion scheme is worthwhile and recent statistics have shown that people who have benefited from the diversion scheme have generally not re-offended.

The scheme essentially allows first offenders who show remorse to escape a formal criminal conviction.

Diversion is not available for drink driving offences and it is also not available for serious criminal activity.

The Police put out a manual entitled  "Best Practice Manual"  and that manual provides the following quotation:

"The diversion scheme has given an offender a second chance by allowing the prosecution to withdraw the case by offering no evidence, if certain requirements are met. Under the scheme, an offender does not receive a criminal conviction but makes good any damage and accepts full responsibility for his or her actions. Diversion is aimed principally at people who fit the diversion criteria and are unlikely to re-offend.  If others meet the special circumstances criteria, they also may be diverted…."

The purposes of diversion are to prevent re-offending and avoid a conviction for the first offender and to provide that first offender with a second chance.

The Police, and the statistics support this view, believe that people who offend in a stupid way and are given one chance, generally do not offend again.

The Police ask for the views of the victim and, often, the victim is against any form of "soft" approach to the offender. However, the Police do not have to follow strictly the victim’s views.

WHAT YOU SHOULD DO IF ARRESTED.

If you are arrested

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Feedback/Blogs/Reviews from related topic: Accessory After The Fact
"I find this topic really helpful as well as all the topics under the "Weekend Arrest" topic. This is the sort of basic informatin which needs to be taught in schools. Don't you agree?"
Feedback/Blogs/Reviews from related topic: Accessory After The Fact
"Well set out and helpful. I now know just how far you can, and cannot go. I was amazed that you cannot "strike" someone if you are only defending yourself as opposed to your property. Good stuff Netlaw! James W. Auckland May 2006"
"Yes . . . interesting. Trev, Bay of Plenty. April 2006"
Feedback/Blogs/Reviews from related topic: Accessory After The Fact
"I was looking round Google to find something about representing myself and I found this and a number of your topics SPOT ON. Thanks. This one was great! Jon F. Auckland - May 2007"
"Thanks Netlaw. Rolf - Auckland"
Feedback/Blogs/Reviews from related topic: Accessory After The Fact
"Is it possible to get a discharge without conviction on a dangerous driving or reckless driving charge? Thanks

Netlaw replies: Yes, it is possible, but very difficult. There would have to be very special reasons like driving in an emergency situation."

Feedback/Blogs/Reviews from related topic: Accessory After The Fact
"I found all your criminal law topics fascinating. I may become a criminal myself just to use your site. Nah, only joking but I liked Self Defence, Citizens Arrest and Drink Driving and Demerit Points.

Henk - Waikato"

Feedback/Blogs/Reviews from related topic: Accessory After The Fact
"I'm making an enquiry on behalf of a relative who is paying child support for a person who is in his mid 30s now, the inland revenue who he is making these payments to told me it is not child support it is spouse support payments and he needs to go back to court to have the order changed. Who do we call now as he is not on a good income and should qualify for legal aid.

Netlaw replies: Yes, Spousal Maintenance is different from Child Support. The Family Court deals with Spousal maintenance but the IRD (Child Support Division) deals with kid's maintenance. Choose any family court lawyer and if he earns less than about $33,000 he should get legal aid."

Feedback/Blogs/Reviews from related topic: Accessory After The Fact
"Dear Netlaw . . . it was really helpful to realise the difficultes in getting suppression of name and to get some of the caselaw. It allowed me to prepare a lot better. I had a silly shoplifting case but I am in my early thirties and I really wanted name suppression. You guys really helped. Also, you other sites are dazzling. Becs (not my real name)

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Feedback/Blogs/Reviews from related topic: Accessory After The Fact
"I was looking round Google to find something about representing myself and I found this and a number of your topics SPOT ON. Thanks. This one was great! Jon F. Auckland - May 2007"
Feedback/Blogs/Reviews from related topic: Accessory After The Fact
"Helped us greatly. We also looked through all your other criminal sites and have printed some off. Thanks Netlaw. Ali"
"Do we have to use the State paid "Youth Advocates"? Mrs H. (name withheld)

Netlaw replies - No, but you do have to pay for a lawyer of your choice UNLESS the case is so serious that it goes to the District Court or the High Court. Then, normal legal aid takes over where you can choose your own lawyer."

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