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Dominic Raab wants new laws 'quickly' to block killer Levi Bellfield's bid to force jail marriage

17 March 2023, 08:36 | Updated: 17 March 2023, 10:10

Raab wants to stop prisoners on whole life sentences from marrying in jail
Raab wants to stop prisoners on whole life sentences from marrying in jail. Picture: Alamy/LBC

By Will Taylor

Dominic Raab has hit out at serial killer Levi Bellfield’s bid to use legal aid so he can marry a jail visitor and pledged to bring in new laws "quickly" that would stop him.

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The murderer, 54, whose victims include 13-year-old Milly Dowler – has warned he would launch a judicial review after he was blocked from marrying a woman in her 40s.

Mr Raab, the deputy prime minister and justice secretary, branded Bellfield’s bid to use taxpayer money as “wrong”.

He told LBC’s Nick Ferrari at Breakfast: “Let me just be crystal clear with you, Nick – I don’t think it is appropriate and I’m going to change the law.

Dominic Raab hits he will try and stop the prison marriage of serial killer and rapist

“But I also think there’s a question around the risk to anyone that would marry an offender as egregious as in this case Levi Bellfield.

“What we’re protectively do to make sure vulnerable people aren’t subject to that element of risk.

“So on both factors, I’m committed to doing what we can to prevent that taking place.”

Read more: Levi Bellfield’s fiancée says he's 'not a monster' and has 'changed' after 17 years in jail

Asked if he could move quickly enough to stop Bellfield’s bid, he said: “I plan to move quickly.”

Mr Raab wants to ban prisoners serving whole life orders, which includes Bellfield, from marrying under his Victims Bill.

And he added: “Passing law is never about any individual case, but I don’t think it is appropriate and both therefore within the realm of the existing powers I have, but also the legislative agenda on which ill be saying more shortly, I think it is wrong.”

Bellfield wants to marry
Bellfield wants to marry. Picture: Alamy

The Sun reports that Bellfield has told fellow inmates the legal battle is “costing me f*** all”.

A source told the paper: “Bellfield’s laughing that he’s getting all this help for free. It’s alarming that, as things stand, his barristers have the law on their side.

Read more: Prison Minister says 'evil monster' Levi Bellfield should be stopped from marrying in jail

“The prison has kicked this into the long grass because they don’t want it to happen, but legally they will probably have to allow it.”

Bellfield was jailed for the murder of Milly Dowler in 2011, having already been jailed for murdering two women and the attempted murder of a third. He is being held at HMP Frankland in County Durham.

A lawyer sent by Carringtons, a legal firm, said delaying his marriage application was “unlawful” and warned of action if no response comes within two weeks.

The Prison Service said: “The application is being considered.”

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