These sentences which were considered to be indeterminate sentences only gave serious consideration by a Parole Board once the probation service were satisfied that the inmate had completed various educational courses as a part of their rehabilitation programme.
However, following a ruling in 2012 by the European Court of Human Rights which found that some inmates rights were being effected under Article 5.1. The Court found that although the sentences were legal, their administration in terms of the availability of courses being very limited and an extensive having a waiting list in many cases was in contravention of the the convention.
These sentences were subsequently abolished by Chris Grayling 2012.
However, despite this various cases are now being brought to my attention of inmates some who have completed double or even triple their tariffs and despite completing all of the agreed courses they are still in Prison with no sign of Parole.
Many have raised issues as to whether or not these matters are being handled in an objective or subjective matter.
Further concerns have been raised recently regarding the various aspects of the Criminal Justice System and it disproportionalities, particularly with the African & Caribbean Community and we are awaiting additional information from the Ministry of Justice with regard to the demographic make up of those still in prison, serving an IPP sentence.
It must be made clear this is not a challenge to the original sentences, however, it is the complete administration of these abolished sentences which is being called into question as clearly, there could be implications under the European Convention of Human Rights again, taking into account the length of many sentences which on average I understand were between two and six years.
In the meantime a letter has been sent to the Secretary of State for Justice Michael Gove MP, highlighting concerns around the administration of IPP sentences; being reviewed as it is hard to understand why over 3000 inmates are still serving a sentence which has been abolished as there are serious concerns of potential Injustice.