Discredited Offending Behaviour Programmes

Appeals Barrister

If you are a long-term prisoner and you want to be released more quickly, you will need to satisfy the Parole Board that your risk has been reduced. If you are a “lifer”, then if you want to be released at allyou will need to show that your risk has reduced. The usual means of showing the Parole Board that your risk has been reduced is by the completion of ‘accredited’ offending behaviour programmes (OBPs), run by the Prison Service on behalf of the Ministry of Justice (MoJ). One of the most familiar OBPs is the sex offender treatment programme (SOTP)

I first encountered the SOTP whilst a pupil barrister. I was instructed to attend at a high security prison for a parole hearing. My lay client, serving a life term, was told that he needed to do the SOTP, but that he could not do it because he…

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