Muru-Muru TAANA-ANDREWS 11/9/2020
Under section 21(2) of the Parole Act 2002
Hearing: 11 September 2020
at Otago Corrections Facility
by AVL from New Zealand Parole Board, Wellington
Members of the Board: Alan Ritchie (Panel Convenor), Ms K Coutts, Mr C King
Support Persons: (withheld)
DECISION OF THE BOARD
- Muru‑Muru Taana‑Andrews, 34, has appeared for the further consideration of parole on his sentence of four years, one month for blackmail, receiving, threatening to kill, possession of methamphetamine utensils, unlawful possession of a firearm and failing to comply with the obligations of a computer search.
- The prison security classification is minimum, the RoC*RoI 0.40546 and the sentence expiry date is 9 September 2022.
- On 12 December 2019, the Board noted the appropriateness of the MIRP as a rehabilitative programme but that there was a barrier because of health services which required six hours of dialysis every second day. The Board suggested other treatment possibilities including individual psychological intervention.
- The Department has, in our opinion, provided a gloomy and unhelpful report. It quotes Psychological Services as saying that individual counselling for Taana‑Andrews would deny other riskier offenders. The Department suggests that it would be better to have Mr Taana‑Andrews treated in the community.
- That, to our minds, overlooks the statutory obligation on us to be satisfied in terms of risk before release can be directed. The ramifications for Mr Taana‑Andrews in his particular situation of not being able to attend group rehabilitation are, essentially, tantamount to a denial of liberty.
- We understand that efforts have been made within the prison to have a different approach taken up for Mr Taana‑Andrews but the efforts have not produced any results.
- We do understand that, at this stage, despite the best efforts of whanau and (withheld), that there is no available accommodation. (withheld) has approached providers such as (withheld) and (withheld) to no avail. It is pleasing to hear that (withheld) is prepared to offer after-care but, of course, we have to be satisfied in terms of risk before we could release Mr Taana‑Andrews to take the benefit of that.
- Mr Taana‑Andrews’ offending was cynical, sustained and nasty. We are bound to require re-assurance in terms of the risk of re-offending.
- In all of those circumstances, we have decided to call for a psychological assessment report. We will schedule Mr Taana‑Andrews to be seen in February 2021 with that report. In the meantime, the Board could not be satisfied in terms of risk to the safety of the community and parole must be declined.