Dr Felicity Gerry KC instructed in mercy petition for 2 IPP prisoners

Published: 10th July 2023

Dr Felicity Gerry KC has assisted in drafting and supported a petition for a conditional pardon for 2 IPP prisoners. The petition was served on the Minister of Justice Alex Chalk MP by Dean Kingham of Rees Thomas Watson solicitors in association with UNGRIPP a campaign group on behalf of those affected by the now abolished and discredited indeterminate sentence for public protection system. The two applications served on 5 July 2023 on behalf of two IPP prisoners still in prison far beyond their original tariff set out requests for conditional pardons.

The applications follow the Justice Select Committee’s recommendation to resentence all IPP’s and the more recent motion condemning the UK Government response to the robust JSC report. The Prison Officers Association, the Probation Institute and the British Psychological Society have all spoken about the IPP scandal. The petitions explain why it cannot be right that, having recognised IPP sentences cause psychological harm, no meaningful steps have been taken to address the situation for those affected. The petition calls on the Minister not to permit inhumane and degrading treatment through psychological harm to be caused to the IPP prisoners still in custody. It is submitted that the two applicants can be safely conditionally pardoned which means they remain convicted but can be released recognising that they have been sufficiently punished and thereafter detained beyond the just period of time in conditions that harm their health.