Parole Board Publish Annual Report 2011

The Annual Report by the Parole Board was published yesterday (23/07/2012) by the Minister for Justice and Defence, Alan Shatter, T.D. The Parole Board provides advise to the Minister on the administration of prisoners who have been sentenced to more than 8 years in prison. The Minister along with his Department will then make decisions on how best to manage such sentences. The Board dealt with 205 cases, these included new cases and cases that were at various stages of processing from previous years. 89 prisoner cases were reviewed in 2011, with recommendations of 88 being forwarded to the Minister, one was deferred until 2012. 85 recommendations were accepted by the Minister.

Prisoners can decline the services of the Parole Board. The Parole Board is making efforts to advice prisoners of the advantages of dealing with the Parole Board and taking on rehabilitation services. During 2012 the Parole Board will develop information and educational programmes for the prisoners.

The Department of Justice, Equality and Defence is currently investigating ways to put the Parole Board on a Statutory footing. Minister Shatter said "My Department is currently considering exactly what role a statutory Parole Board should play, what powers it should have, and the implications of same with a view to preparing the Heads of a Bill. I will make a further announcement in due course."