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Parole and probation woes

The first post by me in some time is a news review - several related stories on the probation service have hit the newspapers today. Apologies for not posting more often, but I have been too busy at work. Expect a normal service for the time being.

According to figures published by the Parole Board, a record number of life sentence prisoners freed on parole were recalled in the past 12 months. 140 "lifers" were returned to prison last year, compared with 90 in 2004-05 and 26 in 2000-01 (Times; Mirror; Mail).

In a related issue, John Reid the Home Secretary, has argued that the probation service isn't working as well as it should to tackle the rate of re-offending (Guardian). Another example of the Probation service's failings is that crime victims who give information in parole hearings can risk their attacker finding out because confidentiality is not guaranteed (Telegraph).

And finally, thanks to the BBC, we find out that serious offenders released to bail hostels can come and go as they please - without supervision - to the point where two child sex offenders were filmed befriending children (BBC; Telegraph).

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