Mon July 16, 2012 7:30pm
UPDATE: CRIME victims say law reforms to stop our worst criminals exploiting the courts with costly legal cases are well overdue.
Notorious criminals bleeding taxpayers from behind bars are set to be silenced by new laws.
Freedom of Information documents obtained by the Herald Sun show prison pests including Julian Knight, Craig Minogue, Greg Brazel and Hugo Rich have forced the State Government to shell out a fortune in public money on legal fees.
Litigation by the four, who have killed 12 people between them, has cost taxpayers $570,000 in lawyers' bills in the past decade.
Editorial: Time to end prisoner rort
But moves by the government to halt their ability to launch legal action was today welcomed by victims' advocates.
Crime Victims Support Association's spokesman Noel McNamara welcomed the reforms, stressing that victims were forced to endure incredible hardship every time Knight or any other notorious criminal brought another case to court.
"It's about time," Mr McNamara said about the legal changes.
"I congratulate the Attorney General and I think it’s a step in the right direction."
He said criminals should be penalised for wasting taxpayers money.
"I’d like to see privileges be taken off those people for the pain and suffering they’ve put victims’ families through."
"We're absolutely sick of the whole thing."
"Every time they open their mouths, and Knight is the biggest offender, it causes a lot of problems for the victims and the victims’ families."
That cost is on top of thousands of hours Justice Department lawyers spent on their cases.
All four inmates are considered accomplished jailhouse lawyers. Brazel has cost taxpayers $81,000, Minogue $58,000, and Rich $34,000.
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