The government will not challenge the decision to release rapist John Worboys, the justice secretary says.
David Gauke said “it would not be appropriate” to seek a judicial review of the Parole Board’s ruling to free Worboys after less than 10 years.
But a legal challenge is still being sought by victims. The Parole Board has said it is “confident correct procedures were followed” in the case.
Worboys, 60, was jailed in 2009 for assaults on 12 women in London.
Mr Gauke said there would be a wider review of how the Parole Board deals with victims.
- The cabbie who preyed on young women
The government had been considering the possibility of a legal challenge to Worboys’s release, but the justice secretary said that, after consulting lawyers, it would not be appropriate for him to proceed.
He said: “I know this will disappoint the victims in this case and members of this House given the crimes for which he has been convicted.
“On a personal level, candidly I share those concerns.”
But he added: “I can reassure the House and the public that Worboys will not be released until his licence conditions have been finalised.”
‘Calculating and dangerous’
At his trial, the court heard how Worboys gave his victims drug-laced champagne, claiming he was celebrating a big lottery win.
The former black cab driver was given an indeterminate sentence of imprisonment for public protection.
He is thought to have carried out more than 100 rapes and sexual assaults on women in London between 2002 and 2008.
Victims’ groups and representatives were outraged by the news of Worboys’s imminent release earlier this month, saying many were not informed before it was made public.
Lawyer Richard Scorer, from the firm Slater and Gordon which represented some of the victims, said his clients were “disappointed” at the government’s decision, but would go forward with the victim judicial review.
“We urge everyone to support it and support the crowdfunding efforts.
“It is crucial that the decision to release this manipulative, calculating and dangerous man can be considered by the courts as soon as possible.”
The Parole Board said it welcomed the review into how it deals with victims.
“We think this is a sensible course of action to take to make sure that the public and especially victims have confidence in the Parole Board’s work.”
Article source: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-42747687