Simon Spence KC interviewed by LBC Radio

June 16, 2023

Simon Spence KC appeared on the Nick Ferrari Breakfast show this morning (Friday 16 June) to discuss reaction to the case relating to the release of Colin Pitchfork by the Parole Board.

The now-63-year-old was sentenced to life in prison in 1988 after pleading guilty to the rape and murder of two 15-year-old girls. His initial minimum term of 30 years was reduced to 28 years in 2009 with Pitchfork released in 2021.However, after two months he was recalled to prison for ‘approaching young women’, in a breach of his licence conditions.

On June 15, it was announced that Pitchfork would once again be released with a new identity, on parole.

Simon was interviewed about the role and makeup of the independent Parole Board and the risk assessments that would have been undertaken to determine release which would include consideration of the families of victims and risk to public. Simon also spoke about his concern with the government’s increasing willingness to override Parole Board decisions. He commented:

“What is of concern is the government’s increasing willingness to interfere in Parole Board decisions, seemingly on the basis of electoral popularism. When I started at the Bar, judges did not set a minimum term, the Home Secretary did. The law changed as that was considered wrong but we appear to be slipping backwards to that position. I should add, given the previous release and recall, it seems this decision requires clear justification from the Parole Board”

Listen from 01:09:59: [LBC Radio]