Dangerous terrorists face minimum 14-year jail sentence under new Bill

20 May 2020, 00:07

A new Bill brought in by the Home Secretary is going to extend prison sentences for those who have committed acts of terrorism
A new Bill brought in by the Home Secretary is going to extend prison sentences for those who have committed acts of terrorism. Picture: Getty

By Kate Buck

The most dangerous terror offenders will be facing minimum 14-year jail terms under new measures being brought in by the government.

Under the Counter-Terrorism and Sentencing Bill, set to enter Parliament later today, those found guilty of serious terror would also be made to serve at least 25 years on licence once they are released from prison.

It was brought in after the terror attacks on Fishmonger's Hall on London Bridge and Streatham.

Announcing the release of the Bill, Home Secretary Priti Patel said: “The shocking attacks at Fishmongers’ Hall and Streatham revealed serious flaws in the way terrorist offenders are dealt with.  We promised to act and today we are delivering on that promise.

“Those who senselessly seek to damage and destroy lives need to know we will do whatever it takes to stop them.”

The Government say it marks the largest overhaul of terrorist sentencing and monitoring in decades, and will end early release for terror offenders who receive Extended Determinate Sentences, where the maximum penalty was life, and make them to serve their whole term in jail.

Two people died in the attack on London Bridge
Two people died in the attack on London Bridge. Picture: PA

The Bill will also allow courts to consider if any serious offence is terror-related, for example an offence involving firearms where there is a proven terrorist connection, and allow tougher sentences to be imposed

Justice Secretary Robert Buckland added: “Terrorists and their hateful ideologies have no place on our streets. They can now expect to go to prison for longer and face tougher controls on release.

“From introducing a 14-year minimum for the most dangerous offenders, to putting in place stricter monitoring measures, this government is pursuing every option available to tackle this threat and keep communities safe.”

Shadow justice secretary David Lammy said: "The horrific terrorist attacks on British soil in recent years demonstrate the need to update terrorism sentencing legislation.

"Labour will look in detail at the changes proposed in this Bill. We will work constructively with the Government on measures that reduce the chances of those who commit terrorist offences from re-offending.

"Those who seek to terrorise our communities with savage acts of violence must be stopped."

Ms Patel will be appearing LIVE with LBC's Nick Ferrari on Wednesday morning.

Click HERE to find out how to listen.