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Wednesday, 28 September 2016

In theory, IPP prisoners can stay in prison for the rest of their lives. But such sentences are not reserved for violent crimes – thousands are serving IPP sentences for crimes such as affray, or group fighting .The 99 year sentence is wrong and needs to be looked as a matter of urgently. Liz Truss can learn from the families 27.OO flus sent letters some through 38 degrees in September expressing their despair, not one person got a reply….

We should have public officials more accountable to Public participation and communication. The relationship between government and citizens is very important. Ultimately government is accountable to citizens for decisions taken, at a community level and at an individual level. Government should consult and involve communities in discussion about decisions that directly affect them. At an individual level citizens have the right to hold government to account for, and get reasons for government decisions that directly affect them.We have a responsibility to have an open dialogue to make sure they are serving you in the best way. if they are not replying are they serving you. How many people have written to an MP on an important matter regardless of prison or not and got no reply?

" communication problems "where did it all go wrong!

Prisons are getting more violent, they’re full to the brim.
Overcrowding, staff cuts and a growing drugs problem have all created a toxic mix in English and Welsh prisons. So it’s hardly surprising there’s been a surge of violence on an unprecedented scale.
The crisis in English and Welsh prisons is a longstanding one.
Back In 2014, the then-chief inspector of prisons, Nick Hardwick, warned of a “political and policy failure” in prisons. A Prison Reform Trust report showed a system under immense strain with high levels of overcrowding, fewer staff, worsening safety, and fewer opportunities for rehabilitation.

In February 2016, the former prime minister, David Cameron, announced a new set of prison reforms with the spotlight firmly on prison education. And although these reforms were welcomed by many, nothing was mentioned about the issues raised by Hardwick. Many reformers believed that the government hadn’t gone far enough. They argue that while education was seen as an essential part of cutting re-offending, it did not solve the ongoing crisis of overcrowding, staff cuts and an increase in violence and homicide.

Following Cameron’s departure from office in June, the new justice secretary Liz Truss refused to guarantee to a committee of MPs in September that the reforms would go ahead.
But as politicians hesitate prisons remain in crisis, toxic with drugs and violence, overcrowded and overseen by fewer staff to manage the problem. There are also rapidly growing numbers of old, sick and disabled people in prison aged over 50, with people over 60 the fastest growing age group in the prison population between 2002 and 2014.

Don’t imprison people unnecessarily

In his report on the recent prison violence, the prison ombudsman reported that while there are lessons to be learned about improving safety after the recent murders, there is no easy solution. Yet it seems to me that there is a course of action that could help alleviate the problem: remove people from prison who don’t need to be there.
In 2012, the system of imprisoning people for their own protection – known as IPP – was abolished. These prisoners are serving an indefinite sentence of imprisonment for public protection, with no release date – equivalent to a life sentence. But four years after the sentence was scrapped, there are still around 4,000 IPP prisoners waiting to be released.
In theory, IPP prisoners can stay in prison for the rest of their lives. But such sentences are not reserved for violent crimes – thousands are serving IPP sentences for crimes such as affray, or group fighting. It is unique to England and Wales, which has more than three times as many people in prison serving an indeterminate sentence than France, Germany and Italy. This is partly because the judges who imposed the sentences have worried about possible backlash for releasing someone who “may” commit another violent crime.
But almost every prisoner who received an IPP sentence has now completed their prison term. Despite this they remain uncertain when they will ever be released.
If they had received the equivalent fixed sentence for their offence, all of them would have been released back into the community already which would have decreased the prison population. Understandably, however, some of those who have remained incarcerated may be still deemed to be a risk.

Crowding in

In 2015, the Prison Reform trust reported: “An explosion in the use of indeterminate sentences and the increased use of long determinate sentences are key drivers behind the near doubling of prison numbers in the past two decades.”
It explained that changes in prison policy and legislation have had a huge impact of the current surge of overcrowding which has pushed mandatory year-long supervision for short termers, mandatory minimum custodial sentences for those who commit a second offence of knife possession and restrictions of the use of release on temporary licence. Another contributory factor to the growing prison population is an increase in more serious and historic cases such as sexual offences going before courts as more victims of such crimes gain the courage to come forward.
There is also a wider story here about women’s prisons, with the majority of women prisoners locked up for a short period for non-violent offences. Most women in prison have different needs to their male counterparts, such as being closer to their children and families. Because there are only 13 women’s prisons, visits are much more difficult.
It’s worth acknowledging that even if all the IPP prisoners were to be released it would barely put a dent in the bursting prison population. But the role of prison has become blurred with some residents not needing to be there. Part of the solution to this overcrowding seems clear – but it is not so clear why the government won’t take radical action to rectify it.

Liz Truss puts prison reform bill on hold

Justice secretary refuses to guarantee that Gove’s bill, which was at heart of Cameron’s last Queen’s speech, will go ahead
Liz Truss sparked astonishment among MPs when she refused to guarantee to the Commons justice select committee that Gove’s prison reform legislation would go ahead.
Theresa May’s new government has pulled back from Michael Gove’s plan to introduce a major prisons bill, which formed the social reform centrepiece of David Cameron’s last Queen’s speech four months ago.
The new justice secretary, Liz Truss, sparked astonishment among MPs when she refused to guarantee to the Commons justice select committee that the government would proceed with Gove’s legislation.  
When asked by the justice committee chairman if the bill was going to go ahead, she replied: “We are looking at that at the moment. It will be in the plan … I am not committing to any specific piece of legislation at this stage.”
Truss said it was essential that the prison reform programme would work and be deliverable, and implied that there was not yet any detailed Ministry of Justice plan to implement it.
“It is a bit difficult to say at this early stage. I want to lay out a plan. The pace of what is happening on the ground will not slow. The key thing is that it has to be deliverable and we have to do things in the right order. That is what I am looking at,” said Truss.
“I am working on a delivery plan at the moment, which we do not currently have.
“My predecessor was specifically focused on reform prisons, which I think are an excellent idea. I am looking at the overall system in which they operate as well … I am not committing to any specific piece of legislation at this stage. That will be in the plan.”
The Conservative chairman of the committee, Bob Neill, expressed astonishment that Truss could not guarantee the centrepiece of the Queen’s speech, asking: “Are we not going to get one? It is surprising that you can’t tell us whether it will happen in this session.”
Gove promised that a prison reform green paper would be published this autumn and a major prison and courts reform bill introduced early next year. He announced the creation of six “reform” prisons, including Wandsworth in London, but the promised autonomy for their governors is severely restricted by current legislation.
The decision to pause Gove’s prison plans and test whether they can actually work represents a major departure by May from Gove’s programme, which was strongly endorsed by Cameron in a major speech.
In her first appearance before the justice select committee, Truss made clear she would not “arbitrarily” cut the current 85,000 prison population to deal with budget pressures.
She did commit to opening five new prisons by 2020 but was not able to say how much of the £1.3bn cost of building them would have to come from the capital receipts of selling existing dilapidated inner-city prisons.
The justice secretary also declined to give further details of the new specialist “jihadi” units in maximum security jails saying only that they would hold a small number of the most subversive prisoners. But she refused to say how many units were planned or how many they would hold.
A Ministry of Justice spokesperson said: “The government remains totally committed to legislating on prison reform and will come forward with plans in due course.
“We also remain committed to legislating on reform of our court system to provide a better and more efficient service. Again, we will come forward with plans in due course.”
Labour’s Jo Stevens, the shadow justice minister, said Truss’s appearance showed Conservative prison policy was in tatters. “Urgent action is long overdue and the prison reform bill was the central piece of this year’s lightweight Queen’s speech, but today she refused to confirm its fate,” Stevens said.
“By failing to tackle the prisons crisis which developed on their watch, the Tories have yet again demonstrated that they have no plan for the challenges this country faces.”
Truss also faced criticism from the Liberal Democrats’ justice spokesman, Jonathan Marks, who said the government had “dropped” its prison reform agenda. He said: “It is a mark of this reckless, divisive and uncaring government that they are pushing full steam ahead with their plans to scrap our Human Rights Act in a bid to fulfil an ill-conceived manifesto promise whilst postponing much needed prison reform.
“Our prisons are overcrowded and England and Wales continue to have the highest imprisonment in western Europe. This has led to increased violence in our prisons and the highest number of deaths in prison on record. If this government does not look seriously at reducing the prison population there will be a crisis on our hands.”

Transformative power of education

David Cameron’s prison reform speech came one day shy of the 18th anniversary of my release from prison.
During my 30 months of incarceration for grievous bodily harm, I used every day to develop my learning – which I didn’t do much of at school. And for the first time in my life I had an education.
Education played a massive part in my life both in and after prison, which is why I was pleased to hear it will be one of the key improvements in the prime minister’s prison reform agenda. Plans were also announced to give former prisoners a better chance of getting job interviews by allowing them to apply for positions without declaring “unspent” convictions straight away.
From experience, this is often the first stumbling block whenever you are asked to tick the criminal declaration box on job application forms. So a simple change like this could make a massive difference to prisoners in the future.
Looking beyond the cover Mikael Damkier/Shutterstock

Although for me, education was a way out, there is still a massive reluctance among many in the prison population to engage with education. The difficulty in getting prisoners to study is that for many stepping back into a classroom is the last thing they want to do. They have had bad school experiences sometimes including truancy and exclusion.
I remember having these feelings myself for many years and for the same reasons. It wasn’t until I read autobiographies during my incarceration by two infamous criminals: one of whom turned into a writer and academic, John McVicar and another who became a writer and renowned sculptor, Jimmy Boyle, that I then felt it was acceptable to become a student.

Back to basics

Prisoners tend to lack basic literacy and numeracy skills, but these should not be considered the measure of their overall intelligence, as there are many very talented prisoners with undiscovered artistic and creative skills. During a recent visit to HMP Durham, I was humbled by the level of talent and skills I saw in the workshops – and it made me sad to think it could all go to waste if someone doesn’t give them a chance.
David Cameron inside the Halfords academy at HMP Onley, where inmates are being trained to become Halford’s shop assistants and bicycle technicians Christopher Furlong/Reuters

Despite this lack of basic skills among prisoners, education is in great demand. Once they get back in the classroom and realise it’s not as scary as they remember, that’s where the real magic can start to happen. This can be seen with the interest in educational programmes such as “Inside-Out” and “Learning Together” where university students study alongside prisoners. These programmes have shown the true determination and eagerness from prisoners wanting to learn, which should send out a clear message that prisoners want to change their lives through education.
But even when prisoners want to improve themselves, recent studies have highlighted poor accommodation and discriminatory policies and procedures by colleges and employers as some of the biggest barriers ex-prisoners face in finding work. While this research specifically looked at those who have just got out of prison, some of these barriers can apply to anyone trying to find employment or continue education with criminal records – it isn’t just those who have been inside who find it hard to get a job.

Breaking barriers

I am now in the final year of my PhD on former prisoners in higher education, and as part of my study I have encountered a lot of deeply worrying stories about difficulties in entering education after incarceration. It is clear most ex-prisoners sadly experience the continual barriers I faced after being released from prison all those years ago. The statistics speak for themselves: re-offend within a year of release while 60% of short-sentenced prisoners will re-offend in the same period. It is estimated .
With the continually growing prison population a cause for major concern, perhaps there needs to be less emphasis on criminal backgrounds !
and more on the person’s eagerness to work? I have seen the numbers inside rise for myself. My first spell in prison was between 1983 and 1985. On my release the then worrying overcrowded prison population in England and Wales was at 48,165. When I was released again in 1998 from my last sentence, the number of prisoners in UK prisons stood at [66,520]((

But if more of these prisoners could experience the transformative power of education, as I have, maybe we could see less re-offending, and a reduction in prison numbers. I welcome the prime minister’s message that prisoners should be treated as “assets” rather than “liabilities”. This is a clear step in the right direction to enable ex-prisoners to feel more integrated and accepted by society.
Offline inmates denied education and skills that reduce re-offendingWith prisons becoming increasingly overcrowded as a consequence of the “tough on crime” policies of many politicians, we should be looking at ways of reducing recidivism through providing quality education that adequately prepares prisoners for the outside world.

Tuesday, 27 September 2016

The IPP prisoner 'trapped' 10 years into a 10-month jail sentence

"I wake up every morning scared of what the day may hold," says James Ward

Justice Secretary Michael Gove has ordered a review of the position of thousands of prisoners serving a sentence falsely labelled  IPP  or Imprisonment for Public Protection.

Many are considered to be languishing inside because they are several years over the minimum sentence they were given.

James Ward was given a 10-month IPP for arson in 2006. Now nearly 10 years on, he is still inside and has no release date.

He regularly self-harms, sets light to his cell, barricades himself in and has staged dirty protests. With a low IQ, and mental health problems, he cannot cope with prison life.

His sister, April, fears what he might do next.

"I do believe that one day we'll get the phone call that Jimmy has taken his own life, definitely."

'Trapped in a box'

Now 31, James has been writing to Radio 4's Today programme to explain what life is like for him inside.

"I find prison hard to cope with, being trapped in a box," he writes. "Prison is not fit to accommodate people like me with mental health problems. It's made me worse. How can I change in a place like this? I wake up every morning scared of what the day may hold."

James' teenage years were troubled. He was in and out of trouble with the police and his parents could not cope with his behaviour.

He got into a scuffle with his father, Bill, over the family dog and lashed out resulting in a year in prison for actual bodily harm. But Bill says James regrets what he did.

"He's told me it was the worst mistake he's ever made... he was young, he is a nice lad, everybody likes James," Bill says.

Image caption James' parents Christine and Bill Ward and his sister April described him as "lost and confused"

Close to the end of his year-long sentence, but unable to cope with prison life, James set fire to the mattress in his cell. Because of this, a judge gave him an IPP for arson and told him he would have to serve a minimum of 10 months. That was 10 years ago.

Since then, James has set light to his cell several times. His solicitor, Pippa Carruthers, says it is linked to his mental health.

"He becomes overwhelmed," she says. "He loses sight of what he needs to do to prove to a parole board that he is no longer a risk and he acts destructively."


IPPs were introduced by Labour in 2003. The then-government estimated the sentence would apply to 900 serious violent and sexual offenders but was actually applied far more widely and at its peak 6,000 people were serving the sentence - some for relatively minor offences such as stealing a mobile phone.

The sentence was abolished by Conservative Justice Secretary Ken Clarke in 2012 who called them a "stain" on the criminal justice system.

But 4,000 people remain in prison and nearly 400 have served more than five times the minimum term they were given.

The sentence has been called Kafkaesque as prisoners remain trapped inside because they cannot prove to a parole board that they are no longer a threat to the public.

They may have to wait years to get a parole review, or are unable to get on courses to deal with their behaviour.

Mr Clarke told Radio 4's Today programme: "It is quite absurd that there are people who might be there for the rest of their lives, in theory, who are serving a sentence which Parliament agreed to get rid of because it hadn't worked as anybody intended.

"The trouble is this ridiculous burden on the Parole Board of saying they can only release people if it's proved to them that they're not really a danger to the public.

"No prisoner can prove that - you never know when people are going to lose their control, what's going to happen to them when they're released."

He added that the key thing was to protect the public by making sure fewer criminals go on to reoffend, through helping them find work and accommodation upon release from jail.

Michael Gove has now asked chairman of the parole board Nick Hardwick to review how IPP prisoners are treated.

While the justice secretary has said that dangerous offenders must be kept inside, he says he wants the majority of IPP prisoners to be "given hope and a reason to engage in rehabilitative activity". He wants to see the prison population reduced.

'Lost and confused'

James' mother, father and sister visited him recently in prison. They said they were worried by his appearance describing him as "lost and confused".

The Parole Board has not reviewed James' case for two years and because the system has failed to carry out a required psychological and psychiatric assessment of him, it could be another year before he gets a parole board hearing.

He could be in prison for several more years.

In his last letter to the Today programme, James said he felt like he was "rotting" in the prison system.
By Zoe Conway Reporter, BBC Radio 4 Today

30 May 2016

Saturday, 24 September 2016

IPP,Man sentanced to months in jail is still behind bars 10 years lather under a sentance ipp that no longer exists

Jason Thorn was jailed under a sentence regime called the IPP which no longer exists  because e the government came to a conclusion it was unjust.

sentence  to 17 months in prison for threatening behaviour doing a heated row is still behind bars more than ten years lather .

A friend said" He has done his sentence several times over and has got lost in the system.






Oana Andreea Marocico
September 14 at 1:07pm
Hello! Just wanted to say a massive thank you to all of you, families and contributors who got in touch with us - the team of BBC Inside Out London - to help produce the documentary aimed at raising awareness about IPPs. Unfortunately, we only had 9 minutes to tell the story, but it reached over 1 million viewers and of course, the online audience. Thank you,  Katherine and Jodie, Carole,everyone who got in touch to help us get the bigger picture of what is happening to your dear ones. Let's hope the decision makers will be soon reform the system. All the best, Oana.



Tuesday, 13 September 2016



I want to tell my sons story he is 36 years old and received an IPP in July 2007 for wounding with intent . The victim had 2 stitches and managed to go on holiday the next day . The victim was a drug dealer who had been trying to sell drugs in the pub i ran at the time , and my son was trying to defend me . Im not minimising the crime in any way it did warrant a custodial sentence .Between 2007 and 2010 my son worked really hard on his offending behaviour . He won awards for his work and at his first parole got recommended to open prison. HE was sent to North Sea Camp in Boston Lincs . There he has been subjected to some of the most appalling abuse simply because a governor there just didnt like him . They have told lies removed him 3 times for made up allegations and they have cruelly and with malice held up any progress he could have made .The last time a year ago they assaulted him bend him up in a nasty restraint and my son tried to defend himself but there was 12 of them in a small room . 3 weeks later they charged him with abh and gbh on officers . my sons mental health has deteriorated so much , he has been depressed anxious and angry at the injustice of it all. they said the cameras were not working , they lost all the photos of his injuries , and they lied their heads off in court covering up for each other . But my son gave evidence on Thursday and it was harrowing to listen to , he told the jury what life as an IPP is really like I was so proud of him . Today after a year of worry and stress that has left my family and my son exhausted a Jury found my son "not guilty on all counts" . I cant tell you how relieved we all are . It has exposed the prison officers and highlighted the abuse and suffering they go through every day .Its a small victory for IPPs but an important one and I wanted to share it with you all . I wasn't active before because   feared government
would use my sons case against us , but i will be very active from now on starting with a letter to liz asking for an inquiry into north sea camp and its treatment of our loved ones . If anyone has any advice for anything else i should do please let me know , Many thanks


My son who is ipp as served 11 years now his parole was supposed to be today they said with the back log he as to wait another 6 months he rang me with a shack y voice of disappointment I really don't know how long he can keep it together I will be ringing my mp first thing in the morning it's cruel what they are doing to these prisoners OMG I'M FUMING

Dj Begley

My friend Chambers is in Swansea prison. Supposed to have served 7 years he's done 20 years. He's now been inside for another 9 months for having a disagreement with his probation officer. I can't remember his first name or number but he is on C Wing. He recently got taken ill and I promised him I would fight for his freedom. I share what I can but I'm not on social media as I was a political prisoner against the government. If it's at all possible please please can you or someone contact Chambers and let him know that there are people out here trying to get him out. He's pretty angry at the system for taking away his youth and his life and sick of courses. It would give him hope and stop him feeling forgotten. Too many have taken their lives.
You're an amazing person. Thank you x


Ipp's luckily haven't effected me personally and to be honest I had never heard of them until watching #insideout this evening. I am so shocked and stunned that there are people still in prison 10yrs + after given a shorter sentence. There are people in prison who have committed much more serious crimes and served less. I hope the government acts soon on this terrible injustice of these people #overcrowdedprisions

Read on the IPP sentance

IPP petition

IPP Facebook

Friday, 9 September 2016

IPP.Thank you for your letter about the department's plans to reform the prison estate and those held on IPP sentences.

The Right Honourable Ministry Elizabeth Truss MP

Lord Chancellor & Secretary of Justice

of State for Justice

Bob Neill MP


Justice Committee

House of Commons


SW1AOAA August2016

Thank you for your letter of 26 July about the department's plans to reform the prison estate and those held on IPP sentences.

It remains my intention to make changes to the physical estate to make it safer, more efficient and to enable a greater focus on rehabilitation. As I know you are aware the current prison estate is overcrowded and out of date, and the physical environmental conditions can also be very poor. Improving the estate will provide the essential infrastructure and foundation for the wider prison reforms to build upon.

We still want therefore to build new prisons fit for the twenty-first century and close and sell the old and ineffective prisons. We are in the process of establishing the preferred locations for the new prisons

based on a number of factors including demand and site availability. At the same time we are continuing to develop our strategy for potential future closures. I will of course provide you with the detail of these plans once they are finalised.

I am aware of the concerns about prisoners serving IPP sentences and I will be looking at all the issues and options in this area. You will however be aware already of the work being undertaken to increase opportunities for prisoners serving IPP sentences to reduce their identified risks and progress through their sentences towards release. This includes enhanced case management for IPP cases where it has been identified that they are struggling to progress and a Progression Regime for IPPs and others who are ineligible for open conditions. This specialist regime is designed to re-introduce the responsibilities, tasks and routines associated with daily life in the community and to allow the prisoner to pursue activities and relationships which support rehabilitation. I can confirm this work, the details of which have been provided by my predecessor in earlier correspondence, will continue.

You have asked also for information on the number of places on offending behaviour programmes that have been available to IPPs for the last 5 years. I have provided this information below. Accredited programmes however are not a mandatory requirement for IPP prisoners. There are many ways in which prisoners may reduce their risks, e.g. through accessing the Progression Regime as outlined above, education, vocational work, one to one work with psychologists etc. Completion of a programme does not automatically mean that risk has been reduced. As you will see from the table there has been a drop in accredited programmes in custody since 2011. This can be explained as being a consequence of the change in investment focus on higher intensity programmes and changes to commissioning arrangements in relation to substance misuse services. I have explained these in more detail below, continued


Brackenbury Oh bloody wow! Did I just read that right!! Completion of an accredited offending behaviour course does not automatically mean risk is reduced! So what the bloody hell the point then! She says it's not the only thing they can do to gain release! Well I. I know we all know different! Because it's all they throw at them. One after the bloody other!! Another prat who hasn't a clue what she's saying before putting pen to paper! So angry right now! This is exactly why I said we all need to highlight our own personal heartache stories and bombard her with them, if that doesn't make her develop a conscience nothing will, she needs to hear all the hoops and heartaches our loved ones have jumped through and been through, every last little detail! And by letter not email as well, I'm half way through mine! And I'm telling her I expect a response or il keep sending it until she does! I will put it nicely.. The first time! after seeing this it definitely needs addressing asap! She's opened up a can of worms saying that, put her foot right in it!! have a funny feeling she's going to live to regret those words! But in some senses she's done us a favour and left the door open! We need to get this statement public... Very loudly too!!
Abbott When are these so called Muppets going to get right, what do they want blood. !!!

Horton So she says that courses are not compulsory and not necessarily helpful. Wonderful. So why then does the Parole Board keep harping on about the need to do courses?!!!! Is there any joined-up thinking in the MoJ? Or is there even any kind of thought process at all?
Mccarthy Does she even know what she is talking about, Had no reply yet to my Email, so will now be sending her a letter, And if the courses are not compulsory, why are the ipps not being released until they do them, pissed right off with her rubbish, she needs to address the ipps situation now, instead of chatting crap
Pettit I would certainly point out that she was not the first to say that and would not be the last. I know I had this info sent to me before. Semms they all shout from the same script. Hopefully is  something that can be seized on used to our advantage. Why should they be able to go unvhallehged over this
McSherry Basically just chatting shit

Laila I swear that is a joke I can't believe that she said that they don't have to do the courses so why r the IPP made to do them??? That's really disgusting...
Abbott It makes you wonder what the hell is going on,Liz truss needs to be questioned over the letter.
Zing They have a quota system so they used to say things about historic offenses before 09 (parole board members don't know what they r doing that is like saying u can't be rehabilitated) so government advised parole board to give knockbacks based on failure to complete offending behavior courses. (means u won't even notice that most members are stupid and don't understand what they are doing) what they are doing is fabricating evidence in order to abuse human rights they isolate ipps, I'm still isolated outside (they don't beleive me when i talk about ipp, harder to get a job, social isolation) that is psychological torture, having an arbitrary sentance is psychological torture (if u aggitate a misbehaving prisoner in a cage and make it feel isolated, does the prisoner behave itself? Is it rehabilitation or punishment?) violent reoffending is 20 times higher in prison than outside (no ipp is easier to manage inside than out. No ipp is being rehabilitated by the state they are being punished, best place for treatment is outside) every discussion uses their terminology. Those courses are intended as being a replacement for previous bs arguments to keep prisoners inside, at the time they needed mass excuses to keep prisoners in otherwise the quota would have been even more obvious (quota on releases is illegal) uk saying we will release 1500 next year is illegal (its against seperation of powers) Montesquieu said without separation of powers there can be no liberty, so judges should be independent from government (however it is not independent) even though the rulling that most ipps will b released some next year some year after is proof that the quota system exists (it is a big quota tho) but keep these tjings in ur mind. Especially the argument regarding violent offenses u r much more likely to commit one inside. Especially for lifers (oasys risk assessment is based on data from all prisoners but length of sentance is biggest factor, those with longer sentances are much less likely to reoffend. This is not factored in, oasys is just a joke, it is not adequate for ipps/lifers, it has been designed to give much higher risk. the risk is not relevent it is a future prediction all risks or probabilities are just predictions for a coin 1/2 heads if flipped does that tell you it will land heads? (no sometimes u can flip it 10 times without a head) the rule with the coin is this, u cannot take the predictive statistics and comment on what will happen as a result, if its 1/2 for heads that doesn't mean on a individual spin it will be heads or that there will b one head in two flips. (i have a degree in physics and mathematics.

Thursday, 8 September 2016

IPP Prisoners, Inside Out showing on BBC 1 Monday the 12th sept at 7.30pm.

And watch on I player 13th September.

You can see  post date IPP  London tonight  11th of September




Ipp prisoner released today!
Kelly Fordyce
8th Sept 27 mins
good morning ppls, what a fantastic morning it is as my josh after 7yrs is getting released today!! after up ipps go through years of so many different emotions an not knowing when he was gettingg to open conditions or even eventually released.  parole date then your stressed wondering what is going to happen, then like my josh it just happens so  fast as he only got his decision yesterday and he is getting released today at 9am. good luck josh , ill miss ya but im extremely happy an excited for ya  cant for my turn lol, roll on my parole!! #getupippsout wils. Steven J Wilson

Friday, 2 September 2016

IPP. A message from Mr Osbourne regarding the Petition- Release the Remaining IPP Prisoners

Osbourne 2 August  2016

This is very good news  regarding the the Parole Board .
I recently served 12 months in prison and one of my cellmates was on IPP. He had been given a two year tariff and had already been in prison for eight and a half years. He had a parole board review due in February this year. Had the parole board been positive he would have served ten years by the reasonably expected date of release. This period would be far in excess of any sentence he could expect if he was sentenced for the same offense today.
There were two other similar but not so excessive cases on my wing that I knew of.
The IPP prisoners would then expect to be under license for the remainder of their lives with the prospect of re--imprisonment for any minor infringement that a less than sympathetic system might create.
I know that release must be the first priority but the license conditions also need to be addressed in order to allow the opportunity for these people to be rehabilitated and move on.

Mark Newby  2 August 2016

Thank you for inviting me here today to speak to you about a subject that not only we are concerned about but that every right thinking member of society should care about – miscarriages of justice.
Today I want to talk to the subject of the inability of the establishment to accept responsibility.
My argument here today is that we are probably at the worst moment we have ever been at for tackling such miscarriages and I would say that one of the fundamental reasons for this is the inability of the machinery of the state to accept responsibility and admit error when they are wrong.
You see we are all human beings in the end and a system that relies on individuals will in the end deliver outcomes based upon human error. Whether you are the hapless accused, the Police, the Prosecutor, the Defence Counsel, the Jury, the Judge, the appeal lawyer, the CCRC or the Appeal Judges We All Make Mistakes And We Are All Infallable .
Of course the fundamental problem with a system that never admits mistakes is that it is in a downward spiral – organisations that cannot admit fault in the end will become failing organisations. The easiest answer is to brush it under the carpet or find an excuse for why things went wrong

But sticking plasters will not save a system which is bleeding from every artery.
As we will see one case which demonstrates better than most complete system failure is the case.

We have given control of our Justice System to the Media and Politicians
2. We have removed fundamental safeguards of those accused and each year these safeguards are eroded further
3. Public funding has been subject to a sustained and unremitting attack
4. Past cuts have encouraged poor representation and cases where every corner is cut
5. The CPS is in my view badly administered and massively underfunded,

6. We have taken the Forensic Science Service which was admired across the World and decimated it and the retention of exhibits for another perceived financial saving. Now we leave exhibits in the hands of private organisations with restricted ability to access those exhibits when a case goes wrong.
7. The Police themselves have equally been attacked by substantial cut backs, large reduction in experienced investigators and a drive towards results at all costs.
8. The Courts are skewed in favour of convictions at all costs and we live in a world where “statistics” are the order of the day, we charge additional fines and disincentivise those who want to plead not guilty.
9. We have a public funding system for criminal appeals which is non-existent, difficult to achieve and awash with delay.
10. The Court of Appeal has become a hurdle which few get across in seeking to appeal their convictions and the Court itself has put in place significant hurdles. For example it has over recent years narrowed appeals based on false memory, weakened fatally good character directions and recently introduced a requirement for original legal teams to comment on the grounds and factual basis. Whether through design or by accident the net effect of these reforms has been to narrow the opportunity to appeal.
The Supreme Court in Nunn has reinforced difficulties in obtaining access to Original Exhibits denying some appellants the opportunity to ever put right their wrongful convictions
12. The CCRC remains under funded, delays are wholly unacceptable and there remains a lack of dialogue and accountability for CCRC decisions
13. Even if you manage to achieve against all odds a successful quashing of your conviction it is virtually impossible to be compensated for what has happened to you.

The problem is that the evidence is that the Court is now pursuing a strategy of narrowing the opportunity to appeal at every turn. From the outside it seems like it is seeking to plug every gap for an appeal in the hope that this will somehow protect the integrity of the system when in fact the converse is true.

Some examples have been:
Requiring a Single Judge to no longer grant permission to appeal on the papers in a case long out of time but to refer it to the full court for consideration.
Blocking the availability of Good Character directions in any case where the Crown might rely on bad character
Requiring appeal lawyers to confirm the factual basis and obtain comments on any grounds of appeal.
On bad appeals reporting Solicitors and Counsel to their regulatory bodies Reducing to an almost non -existent level the availability of rep orders in the Court of Appeal for Solciitors .
Plugging the gap rulings – where there is an appeal granted subsequently targeting that new point and over turning it in subsequent cases.
The CCRC – I have said something about the CCRC already and I probably don’t need to say too much more. Too slow, still too secretive and not referring nearly enough cases. Yet it is still a vital organisation and one with many good commissioners and lawyers such as those who have supported this conference today. The inconsistency and lack of transparency remain the vital issues which the commission still have to address.
We don’t want to see headlines about Professional Footballers applying to the CCRC we want to see headlines about the increased numbers of referrals and quashed convictions of ordinary applicants.
Finally perhaps the gravest challenge to the future is the systematic attack on Legal Aid. We now have a system that has sustained:17.5% cuts on fixed fees.Those fees had already been reduced year on year for the last 15 years Payments incentivised towards securing guilty pleas A dramatic reduction already in the number of providers.Proposals to reduce the number of duty solicitors contracts from 1200 to 525 A systematic attack on criminal appeal firms with aggressive auditing practices.

Limits on when firms can grant funding .Reductions in the fees that can be paid to expert witnesses. The removal of defence cost orders to anyone who has not been refused legal aid and then only paid at legal aid rates.
The consequences of which are large numbers of firms can no longer operate financially and are leaving. The pool of good miscarriage of justice lawyers is rapidly diminishing at a time when conversely the amount of miscarriages are increasing.Ultimately there is a common thread to all of this .it is easy to attack legal aid, to
restrict appeals and fail to refer or to investigate or prosecute flimsy cases when the system has nothing to worry about because it does not answer for its mistakes
where error can be swept under the carpet.
However .. perhaps we are coming close now to a time when the cracks can no longer be papered over. Where the efforts to block justice have become so perverse that they will soon be no longer sustainable. Where scandal has fatally damaged the police, where prosecutions are collapsing with too much regularity and where our appellate system is being criticised by the establishment itself.
The next few years will determine what sort of society we want to be in the end, if we truly believe in justice we shall have to learn how to say sorry and put right our errors.

Karen Bardsley05Aug 2016

My son Ryan  had a parole hearing with Nick Hardwick present as an observer He was told within the week the outcome ( hearing date July 20th) The outcome was that he is to b released to a hostel Sept 6th which I'm thrilled about My son was attacked in 2009 which resulted with him having a titanium plate in his head All through him being in custody (2010) he has complained with headaches You could visibly see that the plate had moved + dropped leaving him with a big visible dent for 1/2 his head Anyway the prison decided to take him to Salford Royal for it to be checked That resulted with the doctors saying that it needed replacing within 3 months The plate was cracked + a screw missing All through custody it seems that they thought he was playing up on his head Most annoying fact is that the prison took him to hospital on Tuesday when he had the replacement plate put in that day He was discharged + sent back to Buckley Hall prison with an open 25 stitches wound No Health care plan I'm utterly disgusted!!! Plus he had the op + none of his family were informed I'm distraught I'm a Llaryngectome { had my voice box removed. Coz of cancer )
> He's a  vulnerable prisoner + I fear for his health IPP prisoners get treated like trash. They didn't even give him clean pillow slips or extra pillows He isn't out till Tues + then onto a hostel for 3 mths He's in no fit state but what can he do?? I don't think there will b anybody at the hostel that's medically trained When he stands or turns his head he can feel all movement in his head with all the swelling. I will follow your campaign closely. 
7th September A Nothing's gone to plan My son was supposed to b released today ( 6th Sept ) but at 8.00 am this morning as they unlocked he was told off the officer that he was staying put!! Apparently there's no room at the hostel My son had given most of his stuff away + hadn't got anything from the canteen Talk about a kick in the teeth Probably another test to see how he reacts We are now expecting him to be released 9th Sept Will keep you updated X

Hardwick said.
The former Chief Inspector of Prisons said there were three categories of IPP inmate who would benefit most:

The Parole Board is also trying to cut the backlog of prisoners awaiting decisions on their release, by hiring more parole panel members and dealing with cases more efficiently.
It was “crazy” to be paying out compensation to inmates held in custody because their cases were delayed due to a lack of resources.

The law society Gazette

It should not be surprising that Liz Truss has paid more attention to prisons than courts during her first few weeks as justice secretary.
Prison Law
What We Do Our prison and civil liberties law experts can provide you with advice and support across a wide range of legal issues, including:
  • Challenging poor conditions and addressing medical issues in prisons and other places of detention
  • Supporting prisoners through the parole process
  • Ensuring that the categorisation of prisoners is appropriate to them
  • Supporting families who are party to coroners’ inquests after deaths in prison or police custody