HL Deb 23 October 2000 vol 618 cc11-2WA
Lord Avebury

asked Her Majesty's Government:

How many life sentence prisoners were considered for release on licence since the beginning of 2000; and whether they will publish a table showing the applications determined; the number of prisoners among those applications claiming to be innocent and not innocent respectively; and the proportion of each group who were successful in their application. [HL4195]

Lord Bassam of Brighton

The principal consideration in the release of life sentence prisoners whose tariffs have expired is whether the risk of reoffending and of harm to the public has been reduced to an acceptably low level. Denial of guilt is one element relevant to the assessment of risk but it is not a bar to release. Life sentence prisoners who continue to maintain their innocence can be and have been released on licence.

A separate record of those who maintain their innocence is not held on computer and the information requested is therefore not readily available.