Crossword Genius

A short stretch of time criminal tries to reduce gradually (8)

Ross

I believe the answer is:

amortise

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Here is my best explanation:

'reduce gradually' is the definition.

'a short stretch of time criminal tries' is the wordplay.
'short stretch of time' becomes 'mo' (mo can mean a very short amount of time).
'criminal' indicates anagramming the letters.
'tries' anagrammed gives 'rtise'.
'a'+'mo'+'rtise'='AMORTISE'

'to' acts as a link.

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This clue was last seen in The Guardian

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