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Victims’ families no power to veto plea deals

Victims’ families do not have the power to veto plea deals made with accused criminals against their wishes, the Attorney-General has told Neil Mitchell.

A new study published in The Herald Sun, found nearly 90 per cent of plea neg­otiations it looked at lead to charges being withdrawn or downgraded in exchange for a plea.

“That’s meaning, killers and would-be killers end up spending less time behind bars than they probably should,” Neil Mitchell said.

Attorney-General Martin Pakula told 3AW Mornings while victims’ wishes are taken into account, they do not have the power to change the prosecution’s position.

“They don’t because ultimately the decision as whether or not a matter is tried is a matter for the DPP,” Mr Pakula said.

“And that’s the way it ought to be.”

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