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Prison Sentences

Volume 488: debated on Wednesday 25 February 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice pursuant to the answer of 12 January 2009, Official Report, column 519W, on prison sentences, how many and what proportion of prisoners serving a prison sentence beyond their original or adjusted tariff were prisoners serving indeterminate imprisonment for public protection who had (a) not yet completed their mandatory courses and (b) are awaiting a Parole Board hearing at the most recent date for which figures are available, broken down by region. (256225)

As of 15 December 2008 there were 1,508 prisoners serving an indeterminate sentence for public protection (IPP) who were or would be held in prison beyond their tariff on 9 February 2009.

There are no mandatory courses that IPP prisoners must complete before being considered for a Parole Board hearing. Therefore, there are no IPP prisoners who are awaiting a Parole Board hearing having not completed a mandatory course.

However, IPP prisoners may be identified as suitable for inclusion in specific offending behaviour programmes, depending upon the nature of their offending and their identified risk factors. As of December 2008, 2,865 IPP prisoners had been given access to at least one offending behaviour programme. This equates to 58 per cent. of the current IPP prisoner population.

These figures are taken from a NOMS database and, as with any large scale recording system, it is subject to possible errors arising from either data entry or processing.