HL Deb 16 December 1983 vol 446 cc476-7WA
Lord Avebury

asked Her Majesty's Government:

Why a prisoner whose number is 065713 was transferred from open conditions at Sudbury Prison to Winson Green Prison in Birmingham the day after the Home Secretary's speech to the Convervative Party Conference; why that prisoner was told at Winson Green by the official who deals with life sentence prisoners, Mr. D. Atkinson, that his next review would take place in four years' time, when he has an application for release on licence now under consideration; why that prisoner has been transferred to Blundeston Prison, and whether they will now make a statement to Parliament on changes in the conditions for deciding whether a prisoner should be released on licence.

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Home Office (Lord Elton)

The prisoner in question is serving a life imprisonment for an offence of murder by shooting in the course of robbery. He was removed from H.M. Prison Sudbury because his release in the relatively near future would not have accorded with the Home Secretary's view of the gravity of the offence. The prisoner was not told by Mr. Atkinson that his case would not be reviewed again for four years. He was, in fact, told that the formal review of his case, due to start this month, would go ahead as arranged. That review is now in progress. The prisoner was transferred to H.M. Prison Blundeston as being the location most suitable to meet his needs. The Home Secretary's policy on the release of life sentence prisoners is set out in the reply which I gave to the noble Lord, Lord Morris, on 30th November.—[Official Report; cols. 787-789].