Prisoner Release (Terrorism Offences)

Oral Answers to Questions — Home Department – in the House of Commons at 2:30 pm on 26th October 2009.

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Photo of Richard Benyon Richard Benyon Shadow Minister (Environment, Food and Rural Affairs) 2:30 pm, 26th October 2009

What steps (a) police forces and (b) his Department's agencies take to monitor the activities of individuals convicted of terrorism offences following their release from prison.

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Photo of David Hanson David Hanson Minister of State (Home Office) (Crime and Policing)

The Government take their responsibilities to protect the public seriously. The police and relevant agencies take all necessary steps to manage the risk posed by those individuals.

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Photo of Richard Benyon Richard Benyon Shadow Minister (Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)

I note the Government's attempts to keep us all secure, but will the Minister comment on the fact that 40 people convicted of terrorism offences have been released into the community, and that a further 25 are set to be released? This is going to put huge burdens not only on our police and security services but on our hard-pressed probation service. How can we be convinced, given the tightness of resources, that the Government are doing their job?

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Photo of David Hanson David Hanson Minister of State (Home Office) (Crime and Policing)

As will happen, there are occasions when people complete their sentences and are released back into the community. It is our job to ensure that we manage those individuals safely in the community. The hon. Gentleman will know that the probation services across the country, along with our colleagues in the Home Office, are determined to manage that risk effectively. We are doing so, and we have put in extra resources to manage it-in the prisons and the probation service-through the National Offender Management Service and the Home Office. Unfortunately, however, people do sometimes complete their sentences.

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