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Reform of automatic early release 04/02/2015 First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has announced an end to the current system of automatic early release for all offenders serving more than four years.

Reform of automatic early release

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has announced an end to the current system of automatic early release for all offenders serving more than four years.

“Prison remains the most appropriate place for serious offenders, and we had already included proposals in the Prisoners (Control of Release) Bill to end automatic early release for certain categories of prisoner,” she said, earlier this week.

“Today I am announcing that we will go much further, ending automatic early release at two-thirds of their sentence for all long-term prisoners in Scotland - which are defined as those sentenced to four years or more. That means every prisoner serving a sentence of four years or more will remain in jail for much longer than is currently the case if deemed necessary by the Parole Board."

Ms Sturgeon also announced that a guaranteed period of supervision would be put in place for prisoners guilty of serious offences, maintaining public safety by promoting the effective rehabilitation and reintegration of offenders coming out of custody into the community.

The announcement follows confirmation by Justice Secretary Michael Matheson of a new approach to offending, with the discontinuation of plans for a female prison in Inverclyde and an additional £1.5 million for projects designed to stop female offending.

The First Minister said the new dual approach would ensure those who do not require to be imprisoned can access community services, while offenders that should be in jail remain there longer.

 

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