Terror Offences: Prison Sentences

Justice – in the House of Commons on 14th July 2020.

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Photo of Andrew Lewer Andrew Lewer Conservative, Northampton South

What steps his Department is taking to increase the length of prison sentences for terror offences.

Photo of Chris Philp Chris Philp The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for the Home Department

Protecting our fellow citizens is our most important duty. The Government legislated in February, via the Terrorist Offenders (Restriction of Early Release) Act 2020, to make sure that terrorist offenders no longer get automatically released at the halfway point; instead, they become eligible for parole-board release at the two-thirds point. Via the Counter-Terrorism and Sentencing Bill, which comes back for Report and Third Reading next week, we are introducing mandatory 14-year minimum prison sentences for the most serious terrorist offenders and ensuring that other serious offenders serve all their sentence in prison. By doing that, we protect our fellow citizens.

Photo of Andrew Lewer Andrew Lewer Conservative, Northampton South

Does my hon. Friend agree that the limited use of terrorism prevention and investigation measures, as amended by the Counter-Terrorism and Sentencing Bill that will come back for Report next week, will serve to help to keep my constituents in Northampton South and those elsewhere safe from terror attacks?

Photo of Chris Philp Chris Philp The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for the Home Department

In Committee, we heard extremely compelling evidence from Assistant Chief Constable Tim Jacques, who is one of the national policing leads on counter-terrorism. He explained how, in his professional experience and that of the security services, the changes that we are making to TPIMs will make our constituents and our fellow citizens safer. I hope that Members will pay close attention to the evidence that Assistant Chief Constable Jacques gave when they consider the Bill on Report next week.