§ Lord James Douglas-Hamilton
asked the Secretary of State for Scotland whether the will make it his policy that, in considering the possible releasing of prisoners on parole, his paramount consideration will be the need to protect the public and that a further consideration will be that sentences should have a deterrent value.
My right hon. Friend has previously made it quite clear—for example, in the statement he made publicly on 11 October 1983—that the safety of the public has always been, and will continue to be, a paramount consideration for him in considering early release on licence. It is also a further consideration for my right hon. Friend that the period of a sentence spent in custody should reflect the needs of individual and general deterrence.