Image source, PA Media
Image caption, Colin Pitchfork was jailed for life for raping and strangling two 15-year-old girls, Lynda Mann and Dawn Ashworth
The Lord Chancellor has asked the Parole Board to reconsider its decision to allow child killer Colin Pitchfork to be released from prison.
Pitchfork was jailed for life for raping and strangling two teenage girls in Leicestershire in 1983 and 1986.
Lord Chancellor and Justice Secretary Alex Chalk said it was “absolutely vital” dangerous offenders were kept behind bars.
He said there was an arguable case the board’s decision was irrational.
Pitchfork became the first murderer to be convicted using DNA evidence.
He was jailed for a minimum of 30 years in 1988 for the murder of Lynda Mann and Dawn Ashworth.
This was later reduced to 28 years for good behaviour.
Image caption, Dawn Ashworth and Lynda Mann were raped and murdered by Pitchfork
The 63-year-old was released from prison in 2021 but was arrested and sent back to prison two months later.
He was granted parole in June following a hearing held in private in April.
In a statement on Monday, Mr Chalk said: “My thoughts remain with the families of Lynda Mann and Dawn Ashworth, whose lives were changed forever by the heinous crimes of Colin Pitchfork.
“My number one priority is public protection and after careful assessment I have asked the Parole Board to reconsider their decision to release him.
“It is absolutely vital that every lawful step is taken to keep dangerous offenders behind bars.”
The Lord Chancellor is a senior member of the cabinet and heads the Ministry of Justice.
His intervention comes after the Conservative MP for South Leicestershire Alberto Costa called for the parole decision to be challenged.
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