Tuesday, 2 November 2010
News Items 2nd November: IPP; Sentencing for Homicide; Prisoners and the vote
Three items in the news this morning concern imprisonment.
There has been a call for parole reviews to be accelerated for prisoners held under the “Imprisonment for Public Protection” (IPP) regime – see The Guardian 31st October. The call, by Peter Lodder QC, is to fast-track parole hearings for almost 2500 prisoners who have served their minimum tariff but are still held for public protection pending Parole Board decisions. See earlier posts about IPP: 24th June and 11th July.
Next, a research paper by Barry Mitchell of Coventry University and Julian Roberts for the Law Faculty at the University of Oxford, found that the public believe different homicide scenarios warrant different sentences, with support for life imprisonment in only the most serious cases. See Law Society Gazette. The actual report may be read on the Nuffield Foundation website – here.
Finally, it is said in The Guardian 2nd November that the government is about to concede that prisoners should be permitted to vote. The move comes after government lawyers advised that failure to comply with a European Court of Human Rights ruling could cost the taxpayer hundreds of millions of pounds in litigation costs and compensation. See - Hirst v U.K. No.2 decided in 2005. No decision is thought to have been taken on exactly how the change will be implemented and which inmates are to be given the right to vote.