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Monday, 3 July 2017

IPP – How do I get out on the papers?

We have written a lot about the changes made by the Parole Board in relation to those subject to a sentence of Imprisonment for Public Protection (IPP).

We wrote an article in May 2017 confirming that the Parole Board now had the power to recommend transfer to open conditions and to direct release on the papers. The aim of this change is to attempt to reduce the number of delays experienced by IPP prisoners when seeking a progressive move.

 Having obtained the release of several IPP prisoners on the papers we have sought to make the most of the changes brought about by the new Parole Board Rules 2016 and progress our clients as quickly as possible.
It is important for prisoners to be aware of the factors that the members of Parole Board will be considering when deciding whether to release an IPP prisoner on the papers. It may not be appropriate for all IPP prisoners to request release on the papers due to their circumstances. Any such applications need to be made with careful consideration and expert advice from a prison law specialist.
Is the Secretary of State involved?
The Secretary of State plays a significant role in relation to the Parole process. The Secretary of State refers cases to the Parole Board, an independent body, for their consideration. Where the Parole Board directs the release of a prisoner into the community it is the Secretary of State who ultimately releases that prisoner, being bound by the decision of the Parole Board. Where the Parole Board recommends transfer of a prisoner to open conditions the Secretary of State must approve that decision.
The Secretary of State can submit what is known as a ‘view’ to the Parole Board. This ‘view’ sets out the Secretary of State’s attitude towards the potential release of the prisoner on the papers. This will not happen in all cases and in truth will only be put forward in exceptional cases where the reports contained within the dossier support release.

A ‘view’ can be provided by the Secretary of State at the initial Member Case Assessment stage or at any point during the Parole Review.
The Secretary of State is under no obligation to submit a view and cannot be directed to do so by the Parole Board. Any ‘view’ provided by the Secretary of State will be provided of their own volition. It is of course still a matter for the Parole Board to conduct their assessment of risk and to determine the suitability of release of the prisoner. The Parole Board are not bound to follow the ‘view’ provided by the Secretary of State and can still proceed to take oral evidence before directing release if felt necessary.
The submission of a ‘view’ by the Secretary of State is only in relation to release on the papers. It is not applicable to a recommendation for transfer to open conditions.
What will the Parole Board be looking for?
When considering release on the papers the Board are still to apply the test for release which is whether it is necessary that the prisoner remain confined for the protection of the public. This is solely a risk based test and the Board will be looking at the risk of serious harm.
The Parole Board have now issued guidance to its members to assist in dealing with applications for progression on the papers.

All cases will be considered on their individual circumstances with the facts of the case being applied to the test for progression. It is unlikely that a decision for progression will be made on the papers unless there is a consensus between report writers that progression is supported.

The Parole Board will also consider many factors including, but not limited to:
• The seriousness of the offending and the length of the tariff;
• Is there sufficient information about the risk factors;
• Behaviour in custody and security concerns;
• Evidence of impact of offending behaviour work on risk;
• An understanding of triggers and motivation behind offending;
• Evidence of sufficient testing on Release on Temporary Licence;
• A complete and robust Risk Management Plan.
The Parole Board are concerned with the imminence of risk of causing serious harm and will also consider how quickly a harmful act may take place following release. It is therefore important that prisoners demonstrate that they have a good insight into their risks, how to manage them and that they will be able to cope outside of the restrictive environment offered by imprisonment.
How important is the Risk Management Plan put forward by the Probation Service?
The proposed risk management plan is essential to any potential decision to release on the papers. The plan needs to cover support and controls in the community including a plan should risk management break down, risk escalate or behaviour deteriorate.

The plan will also need to cover protective factors that are available in the community including family and professional support.
In terms of licence conditions, it is for the Parole Board to set licence conditions when directing release. The Parole Board need to be satisfied as to the appropriateness of the release address as well as possible move on plans. They also need to feel that the licence conditions are appropriate and that they cover relevant risk factors and victim issues.
When might release on the papers not be appropriate?
The Parole Board members have been given guidance as to when it would not be appropriate to release a prisoner on the papers. Circumstances would include situations where the assessment of risk presented by professionals is finely balanced and questioning of those professionals is required. Where there is an important issue of fact or mitigation which requires exploration. Where there is differing opinions from the professionals in the case; either between the Offender Manager and Offender Supervisor or between psychological and psychiatric experts.
Other situations include prisoners who are assessed as posing a very high risk of serious harm to the public, where there are outstanding criminal proceedings to be resolved or high-profile cases where an Oral Hearing may be needed to explore the management of media attention.
The above is by no means an exhaustive list of what the Members of the Parole Board will take into consideration when deciding on the papers. Each case will be considered on its own individual merits and circumstances. To best argue for a progressive move and potentially save delay in waiting for an Oral Hearing, advice and assistance from a specialist prison law lawyer is essential.
Should you require any assistance with a Prison Law issue please contact our Prison Law department at Hine Solicitors on 01865 518971 or FREEPOST – RTHU – LEKE – HAZR Hine Solicitors, Seymour House, 285 Banbury Road, Oxford OX2 7JF for our Oxford office or FREEPOST – TRXS-TYCU-ZKHY Hine Solicitors, Crown House, 123 Hagley Road, Birmingham B16 8LD for our Birmingham Office.


Jez  So many cases I hear about where parole hearings are deferred and deferred again because paperwork isn't complete. The most common being the risk management plan. An essential report done by the Probation Officer. It is disgraceful that the parole board have no power to issue a financial penalty on the probation service where they repeatedly fail to deliver these reports on time. It causes anxiety and trauma on the prisoner and their family having to constantly cope with delay after delay due to no fault of their own.

This is IPP , a relatively short sentence turns into hell. Over a decade later after his hopes were raised at a positive cat D move. Suddenly its taken from him due to no fault of his own and the trauma leads him to attempt to slit his own throat. That's just what this sentence can do. Glad he finally has hope and I pray that this is the end of his suffering. IPP (inexcusable persistent persecution) Any MP that tells me this sentence is humane and isn't torture is going to get one hell of an ear full from me!
Piercy Probation really need to get a backlash on them if the reports isn't done on time and or not done right... But it said the final decision is down to parole and SS so it's not uptp probation officers or prison it's causes to much anxiety and stress and trauma on prisoner and loved ones probation need a good slap for causes so much delays and reports I think they need to put a power in to make sure this no longer happens no more. Heart-breaking....  
Ruth W  my brother let him out !!!

Sam Paul was given his oral hearing date for next Monday at 10.00 am this has now been changed at the parole boards request to 2pm  and both his offender supervisor and solicitor have objected. Paul was not aware of this change and only found out via the offender manager, he has since spoken to his solicitor who has said the parole may be deferred due to this. Obviously, this will be the third deferral on the same hearing as the original date was July 8th 2016, I want to  sort this out to avoid another deferral, as this is really upsetting Paul as he has been told everyone is recommending release to a hostel and the other two deferrals were due to psychologist not attending.


Dear Katherine

Can you please look into this matter for me without disclosing who i am .  What was Mr Phil Wheatley doing at the, What if we rethought Parole? meeting held on the 22nd June 2017 in London?

Mr Wheatley behind alot of malpractices and corruption within the Prison Service cover ups.  Two female Prison officers, Mrs Carol Lingard (won £500,00) and Ms Emma Howie (won £43,875) against HMP Wakefield, whilst the Prisoners were being abused by Prison officers, and these two ladies were victimised for standing up for the Prisoners at HMP Wakefield.

Mr Wheatley was the one the covered everything up, yet both ladies won at the Employment Tribunal.  Later the same character left Her Majestys Government and started working as a private Consultant for G4S.  The Civil Service Union was very concerned about this, and the article is attached of what was said.

Please can you look into this matter, as  to why would Mr Wheatley be coming into a meeting that we all attended, as he certainly wasn't giving any ideas, yet getting information to probably run more corruption or cover ups.

Employment History

·         1969–70 Officer, Hatfield borstal, HM Prison Leeds;
·         1970–74 Assistant governor, HM Prison Hull;
·         1974–78 Training specialist, HM Prison Service College;
·         1978–82 Assistant governor, HM Prison Leeds;
·         1982–86 Deputy governor, HM Prison Gartree, Leicestershire;
·         1986–90 Governor, HM Prison Hull;
·         1990–92 HM Prison Service East Midlands area manager;
·         1992–95 Assistant Director of Custody, HM Prison Service;
·         1995–1999 Director of Dispersals (in charge of six highest security jails);
·         1998–2003 Deputy Director-General, HM Prison Service;
·         2003–2008 Director-General, HM Prison Service;
·         2008–2010 Director-General, National Offender Management Service.




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