Justice Minister, Delroy Chuck, says harsher penalties for murder convicts will help reduce the number of reprisal killings in the country.

Minister Chuck made the argument Wednesday in his opening remarks at a meeting of the Joint Select Committee of Parliament considering amendments to the Criminal Justice Act.

Under the proposed legislation, a sentence for capital murder will carry a mandatory minimum prison term of 45 years, up from 15 years.

The sentence for persons convicted of non-capital murder will be moved to 35 years, up from 10 years.

Minister Chuck says far too often, families of victims are left feeling a sense of injustice, due to the seemingly light sentences handed down to those found guilty of taking the lives of their loved ones.

Delroy Chuck, Minister of Justice.