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Police car (By Oxyman (Own work) [GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html), CC-BY-SA-3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/) or CC BY 2.5 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.5)], via Wikimedia Commons) Police (Kent Police on Facebook) Ballot Box Suffolk Constabulary logo Suffolk PCC logo

  • Police car (By Oxyman (Own work) [GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html), CC-BY-SA-3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/) or CC BY 2.5 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.5)], via Wikimedia Commons)
    Article: Jul 1, 2017

    The Safer Neighbourhood Teams of Suffolk Police continue to provide monthly newsletters, giving a breakdown of crimes reported each month, and of police priorities and activities in individual areas. Their website offers landing pages giving access to the individual areas:

  • Suffolk PCC logo
    Article: Jan 22, 2017

    In his blog at http://www.suffolk-pcc.gov.uk, Tim Passmore, Police and Crime Commissioner for Suffolk, has published a plea for support:

    "As your PCC I need to ensure Suffolk taxpayers get the very best value for money to provide policing in the county. At the moment I do not believe we get a reasonable share of Government funding and I would like your support to make a case to Government for a fairer settlement. I would like you to consider my assessment of the issue below and if you agree, send me a note of support that I can forward to the Minister of State for Policing. The Policing Minister, Brandon Lewis MP, has commissioned a fundamental review of the funding formula which I welcome as it provides me with this opportunity to lobby for a formula which is readily understandable, transparent and provides a fairer funding settlement for Suffolk."

  • Helen Korfanty, Lib Dem candidate for Suffolk PCC, at election count
    Article: May 8, 2016

    Helen Korfanty writes...

    Well, what a week it has been! I would like to thank everyone in Suffolk who voted for me in the PCC election, whether you were one of the 11,726 who chose me as their first preference, or one of the many who chose me as second preference.

    It was lovely to meet so many of you in the run-up to the election, both at public and private events, and on the streets of towns across Suffolk. This is the first time that the Liberal Democrats have put up a PCC candidate in Suffolk, and we are very pleased with the reaction that we have had from the public.

  • Suffolk Constabulary
    Article: May 7, 2016

    Tim Passmore (Conservative) has been re-elected to the paid position of Suffolk's Police & Crime Commissioner for the next four years, after a second-preference vote count that extended his first-preference lead over Cath Pickles (Labour). The overall turnout in Suffolk was 24.47% (an improvement on the 16.01% turnout in 2012, when the election last took place). Liberal Democrat candidate Helen Korfanty achieved 11,726 first-preference votes across the county.

  • Vote today
    Article: May 5, 2016

    Your vote is important, so don't forget to use it -- and for this election, you get to vote for both a first preference and a second preference. The polls are open from 7 a.m. until 10 p.m.

    Helen Korfanty is the Liberal Democrat candidate for the post of Suffolk Police & Crime Commissioner. Her long experience in the criminal justice system, working with both police and the public, makes her the ideal candidate for the role. You can read more about her here: http://www.korfanty.org.uk

  • PCC election is tomorrow - don't forget
    Article: May 4, 2016

    Tomorrow is polling day. Don't forget to vote.

    Your Liberal Democrat candidate for Suffolk Police & Crime Commissioner is Helen Korfanty.

    If elected, Helen intends to:

    • encourage a collegiate, consultative culture to decision making in policing in Suffolk, respecting and tapping into the wisdom and experience of front line workers
    • be the advocate for the people of Suffolk to ensure that we can live in a safer community.
    • help find financial savings and efficiencies in the Police Service so that resources can be found to fight growing serious crime such as child abuse, cybercrime and fraud.
    • encourage policies and technological innovation aimed at reducing crime and re-offending
    • encourage the referral of people with physical /mental health and addictions to the best agency to deal with their problems effectively and away from the Police Service.
    • ensure that those who experience domestic abuse and violence are able to access support and achieve the best outcomes for their individual needs
    • encourage cooperation with other police services to maintain specialist skills and respond to unexpected challenges.
    • negotiate with central government for the maximum financial resources for the police service
    • support and encourage the voluntary sector who support the victims and bring innovative approaches to the causes of crime.
  • Tim Farron 2016
    Article: May 3, 2016

    In Suffolk Coastal, this week's election is to select the Police & Crime Commissioner for Suffolk, and we have no council elections at the same time. But elsewhere in the country there are local elections as well, for which the Liberal Democrats nationally have produced party election broadcasts. These focus on a core tenet of Liberal Democrat policy -- the importance of community politics, and the genuine effort made by Lib Dem councillors to improve the lives of people in their local areas.

  • Helen Korfanty
    Article: May 2, 2016

    "With great power comes great responsibility" -- Spiderman's Uncle Ben (and the National Convention in France, 1793)

    How can the emergency services collaborate most effectively? And how can the Police & Crime Commissioner help, with the Police and Crime Bill (currently going through Parliament) due to give PCCs even more powers than they have already?

  • Suffolk PCC ballot paper 2016
    Article: Apr 23, 2016

    If you are in Suffolk Coastal, and have registered for a postal vote, you should by now have received your ballot paper and other documents relating to the Police & Crime Commissioner election on Thursday 5th May. Don't forget to return the ballot paper to the Returning Officer in good time.

    Even if you think (as many do) that the role of Police & Crime Commissioner is unnecessary, bear in mind that the appointment is going to be made. The PCC controls a very large budget, and is accountable for decisions that have major and longlasting effects on policing in Suffolk Coastal, so it is important to choose the best candidate available. Use your vote, and use it wisely!

  • PCC bird
    Article: Apr 21, 2016

    An interview with Helen Korfanty -- Part 2. For more information, see Helen's website at http://www.korfanty.org.uk.

     
    

    What do you think are the biggest challenges that the PCC will have to face?

    Money is a perennial problem, of course, and not everything can be solved by simply increasing council tax (which, in any case, would be financially onerous for those on low incomes). Some sort of balance needs to be found so that service levels can be maintained. The recent cutbacks in police funding have led to the loss of seventy community support officer jobs, and the ending of public access to fifteen police stations in Suffolk. This leaves just three police stations open to the public.

  • Helen Korfanty attending a workshop at CoPaCC
    Article: Apr 19, 2016

    An interview with Helen Korfanty -- Part 1. For more information, see Helen's website at http://www.korfanty.org.uk.

     
    

    What makes you the best candidate for the post of Suffolk's Police & Crime Commissioner?

    After 33 years of front-line working in the criminal justice system, I have seen first-hand the challenges faced by the police and by all the professionals involved. This means that I can identify where many of the problems lie - and, more importantly, I can identify potential solutions based on experience and understanding, and not just on theory, philosophy or wishful thinking.

  • Helen Korfanty, Lib Dem candidate for Suffolk Police & Crime Commissioner
    Article: Apr 14, 2016

    What do you want from Suffolk's Police & Crime Commissioner? What should the new PCC's priorities be? The election is just three weeks away, so now is your chance to get your views across!

    Helen Korfanty will be doing a walkabout question-and-answer session in the Thoroughfare in Woodbridge, on Saturday 16th April, between 10 a.m. and 12 noon, together with members of the Woodbridge branch of the Suffolk Coastal Liberal Democrats.

  • Supplementary Vote
    Article: Apr 11, 2016

    Regular elections in England use the "first past the post" system, in which you cast a single vote for your preferred candidate, and the candidate who receives the highest number of valid votes is the one who wins the election. The PCC elections run on a different system, called the "Supplementary Vote" system.

  • Suffolk PCC logo
    Article: Apr 10, 2016

    With less than a month to go until the Police & Crime Commissioner elections on 5th May, nominations have now closed. The final list of candidates standing in Suffolk is as follows:

    • Helen Korfanty (Liberal Democrats)
    • Tim Passmore (Conservative and Unionist Party)
    • Cath Pickles (Labour)
    • Terence Carter (Green Party)
    • Simon Tobin (UK Independence Party).
  • PCC bird
    Article: Apr 7, 2016

    The deadline for receipt of nominations for the upcoming Police and Crime Commissioner elections is at 4 p.m. today, and the official announcement of candidates is due for publication tomorrow. In the meantime, it is worth noting that the Liberal Democrats have selected candidates for nomination in all six counties that make up the wider Eastern region, as follows:

  • Survey logo
    Article: Mar 30, 2016

    Suffolk Coastal Liberal Democrats want to hear your views on the issues that affect you in Suffolk Coastal, so we plan to run brief surveys on various topics throughout the year to find out what is important to you. Each survey will run for two or three months, and you can access the current one at any point via the "Tell us what you think" menu option on the left-hand side (in the "Get involved" section of the menu).

  • Suffolk police cars respond to an emergency call in Bury St. Edmonds (Martin Pettitt - http://www.flickr.com/photos/mdpettitt/3012440687/)
    Article: Mar 29, 2016

    Police stations are closing to the public, the number of PCSOs is being reduced, fewer police officers are to be seen dealing with everyday issues on the street, and there is less direct contact between the Safer Neighbourhood Teams and their communities - all as a result of recent cost-cutting in Suffolk Constabulary.

  • Lib Dem PCC candidates - Jackie Howe (Norfolk), Helen Korfanty (Suffolk)
    Article: Mar 20, 2016


    An independent organisation called CoPaCC (Comparing Police and Crime Commissioners) was set up shortly after the first Police & Crime Commissioner (PCC) appointments to monitor police governance, in particular the work of the PCCs and their offices. A few days ago, they ran a National Briefing Day, unaffiliated to party politics, and free of charge to all PCC candidates standing for May's election in England and Wales.

  • European Arrest Warrant
    Article: Mar 12, 2016

    The European Arrest Warrant (EAW) is a good example of how European Union co-operation and legislation can improve the pursuit of justice in individual member countries. In essence, the EAW makes it quicker and simpler to arrange extradition of people who are wanted for criminal prosecution or detention in one EU country but who are located in another EU country. It is no longer possible for EU countries to refuse to surrender their own citizens on the basis of their nationality if another country has issued a European Arrest Warrant for their return.

    The EAW has been responsible for some very high-profile arrests and subsequent returns to countries seeking to bring the criminals concerned to justice. Examples include a failed London bomber caught in Italy, and a German serial killer caught in Spain*. But the EAW can be issued for less extreme offences as well, as long as the maximum penalty for the offence would be a custodial sentence of at least one year, or if the criminal has already been sentenced to four or more months in jail, and as long as the use of the EAW is proportional to the seriousness of the offence and to the costs and other implications of executing it. Suspects apprehended under an EAW are entitled to fundamental rights in their handling, such as the right to legal aid, and the presumption of innocence. And alongside the use of the European Arrest Warrant to help in apprehending criminals, there is now greater sharing of data between EU countries, to assist in law enforcement.**

    In the past few weeks, the EAW has resulted in several extradition orders related to crimes committed in Suffolk, for a man being returned from Romania to the UK to face charges of sexual assault and attempted rape***, a man being returned from Ireland to face child porn charges****, and a man being returned from France in relation to a cyber-crime investigation.*****

    Helen Korfanty, Liberal Democrat candidate for Suffolk Police & Crime Commissioner, comments on the value of the EAW in cases where crimes have an international aspect: "In one of these recent Suffolk cases, the accused was sent back in seven days of being traced and arrested in his home country. It is particularly helpful that a European arrest warrant can get a suspect back to the country of investigation within days of the warrant being executed."

  • scam
    Article: Mar 9, 2016

    Cyber-crime knows no borders, and the sums involved can be massive. One recent example published in the East Anglian Daily Times* shows how wide the net needs to be cast in order to catch the criminals involved.

    The local story starts in Felixstowe where it is alleged that a business was tricked into transferring just over £1million into the hands of online fraudsters. An investigation by Suffolk's Cyber-Crime Unit soon grew into a nationwide enquiry, encompassing similar frauds across the country, and the Metropolitan Police's cyber-crime and fraud team, Falcon, then took over. Twenty people from across the UK are now charged with offences including conspiracy to defraud, possession of fraudulent articles, and conspiracy to commit money-laundering offences. One of the accused was detained in France, on a European Arrest Warrant issued in London, showing how European Union collaboration is essential when fighting crime across borders.

    The current Police & Crime Commissioner reports** that crime is increasingly being committed online. Suffolk Constabulary's Incident and Crime Management Hub will have staff trained to deal with cyber-crime, referring the more serious cases to the joint Cyber & Serious Crime Unit. A key focus is to ensure that potentially vulnerable people are advised on how to protect themselves against crimes of this type.

    Helen Korfanty, the Liberal Democrat candidate for Suffolk Police & Crime Commisoner (PCC), notes a Financial Fraud Action UK*** report which values online banking fraud at £60.4million in 2014, an increase of 48% on the previous year and an all-time high since records began in 2004. She recommends that people increase their awareness of online fraud, to prevent them from becoming victims, and suggests the website: www.financialfraudaction.org.uk as a good source of information.

    A collaborative approach to modern-day cyber-crime fighting needs to involve other police forces (both nationally and internationally) as well as the public. Helen points out: "This example shows how important it is for a PCC to work with the police to raise awareness of cyber-crime, to help reduce the incidence of such crimes and to increase the detection rate."

  • Handshake (collaboration) (By Berdea (Own work based on: File:Handshake icon.svg) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons)
    Article: Feb 27, 2016

    It has sometimes been suggested that Suffolk Constabulary and Norfolk Constabulary should merge into a single unit, or that greater collaboration and sharing of services could assist in cost cutting. The truth is that the two forces already have a range of collaboration agreements in place, and one of the obligations of the Police and Crime Commissioner is to publish details of these agreements.

  • Candidate Exam In Progress
    Article: Feb 22, 2016

    One of the criticisms sometimes touted in the press about Police & Crime Commissioner candidates is that since they come from lines of work unrelated to police activity, they may not be properly equipped to take on the role. Helen Korfanty, the Liberal Democrat candidate for Suffolk is, of course, very well acquainted with the police and their work through her role as a duty solicitor in police investigation centres and magistrates' courts, and through her professional specialisms in criminal law and family law (see http://suffolkcoastal-libdems.org.uk/p9vB for more information about Helen's background). So that criticism cannot be levied against her.

  • police tape
    Article: Feb 21, 2016

    At the Liberal Democrat Suffolk Campaign Conference on Saturday, Helen Korfanty (Liberal Democrat candidate for Police & Crime Commissioner in Suffolk) gave an overview of her campaign plans. She was joined on the platform by Jacky Howe, who is standing as the Lib Dem candidate in Norfolk, and who has gone through the same rigorous selection procedure as Helen.

  • Scales of Justice
    Article: Feb 14, 2016

    As part of a wide-ranging cut in provision of court facilities, and the closure of 86 courts across England and Wales, the Lord Chancellor has agreed that:

    • Bury St Edmunds Magistrates' Court and Family Court will close once suitable local provision has been established, and is currently scheduled to happen between between July and mid-September. Magistrates' Court business will be conducted in Ipswich and (to a lesser extent) Norwich, while Family Court hearings will move to Triton House in the town, or to Cambridge.
    • Bury St Edmunds Crown Court will close outright, since it is currently unused and Ipswich Crown Court can be used instead.
    • Lowestoft Magistrates' Court, County Court and Family Court will close outright, in the first tranche of court closures, with public-facing activities scheduled to be withdrawn by June 16. Work will move to Great Yarmouth, Ipswich and Norwich.

    Respondents to the consultation for both Lowestoft and Bury St Edmunds were overwhelmingly opposed to the closures, raising particular concerns over Suffolk's poor transport links and the resultant impact on access to justice if courts are not held locally.

    HM Courts & Tribunals Service argues that new digital technology and video conferencing capability means that the need for court attendance will diminish in the future, and that money is better spent in enhancing digital access (and improving facilities in remaining courthouses) than in maintaining the current provision.

    Helen Korfanty, recently selected as the Liberal Democrat candidate for Police & Crime Commissioner in Suffolk, is a Duty Solicitor in Magistrates' Courts and Police Investigation Centres, and specialises in Criminal Law and Family Law. She knows the system well, and is very strongly opposed to the closures. "We should continue the fight to save Lowestoft and Bury St Edmunds Courts. We should not despair."

    With the courts' emphasis on remote video communication as an alternative to physical access, Helen also notes that the digital technology needed to implement this will require enhanced facilities at both ends of the remote link. She is adamant that the costs of any resultant technology enhancements at police stations must be met by the government, and not be passed down to the individual police force.

    Tim Farron, Leader of the Liberal Democrats, has called the widespread court closures "an attack on access to justice".

     
    

    Sources:

  • Helen Korfanty, Lib Dem candidate for Suffolk Police & Crime Commissioner
    Article: Feb 6, 2016

    Helen Korfanty has been selected as the Liberal Democrat candidate for the upcoming election of the next Suffolk Police & Crime Commissioner. You can read more about her here: http://suffolkcoastal-libdems.org.uk/en/page/pcc-lib-dem-candidate-for-suffolk.

    As Liberal Democrats, we are determined to ensure that any candidate we put forward is highly qualified for the role, and committed to it, with a full understanding of what the job entails and the responsibilities that it carries. The candidate selection procedure has been rigorous, culminating in open meetings for local members of the Liberal Democrats party to grill Helen on her relevant experience, suitability and intentions. Impressed with Helen's presentation and responses, her selection has been welcomed enthusiastically by members.

  • Public front counter closing at Felixstowe Police Station (Underlying photograph by Andrew Hill [CC BY-SA 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons)
    Article: Jan 31, 2016

    If you live in Suffolk Coastal, then you will no longer be able to go to a local police station to speak face-to-face with a police officer. The incumbent Suffolk Police and Crime Commissioner has recently announced* the closure of a number of police station front counters, leaving just three public access points in all of Suffolk. So if you live in Suffolk Coastal and you want to speak to the police in person, you will need to travel to Ipswich, Bury St Edmunds or Lowestoft.

  • Lib Dem mental health poster from 2014
    Article: Jan 30, 2016

    In 2014, 37% of the demand on the Suffolk police force was related to mental health*.

    In July 2014, at a public meeting in Saxmundham**, the incumbent Police and Crime Commissioner for Suffolk was asked about the action being taken to resolve the link between poor mental health, addiction and crime. He described addiction services being introduced for a triage programme, for drugs testing on arrest, and for addiction treatment and rehabilitation. The minutes of the meeting record that "he advised that the Suffolk Health and Wellbeing Board were trying to address these issues by joined up partnership working".