22 Jan 2014

NZ needs one-punch law - trust

6:44 am on 22 January 2014

The introduction of eight-year jail terms in parts of Australia for people found guilty of killing someone with a single punch, has ignited debate on whether there should be similar sentences in this country.

The New South Wales government has brought in the mandatory sentence for people responsible for the deaths while under the influence of alcohol or drugs.

Spokesperson for the Sensible Sentencing Trust, Ruth Money, says a lengthy mandatory jail term should be introduced in New Zealand because juries struggle to convict people of murder based on a single punch.

But law professor at the University of Auckland Bill Hodge doesn't think it's needed, saying current legislation covers fatal punches.