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Indefinite prison sentences are a 'blot on the justice system' says Royal Holloway Parole Board Professor

Posted on 15/08/2017
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Professor Hardwick calls for changes to justice system

Royal Holloway’s Professor Nick Hardwick has called for the burden of proof for Prisoners held indefinitely under Imprisonment for Public Protection sentences to fall on the Ministry of Justice.

Nick Hardwick, former Chief Inspector of Prisons, current Parole Board Chairman and Professor of Criminal Justice in the School of Law at Royal Holloway has criticised prisoners held indefinitely having to prove they are safe to release.

Festering in prison long after punishment

BBC News, reporting on the Professor’s statements to the Today Programme on BBC Radio 4 said;

‘In March, about 80% of IPP prisoners - 3,347 - had already served their minimum term but were still locked up.

In his first interview since taking up his post in March, Prof Hardwick told the BBC that procedural delays, problems accessing offending behaviour courses and finding suitable accommodation made it "incredibly difficult" for some IPP prisoners to prove that it was safe for them to be let out.

"Some of them are stuck, festering, in prison long after the punishment part of the sentence," he said.’

He called current practice a ‘blot on the justice system’ and called for action to redress ongoing injustices.

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